Social and emotional learning, or SEL, programs have flourished in schools during the last decade. In this course the instructors (Emily Price and Ben Kirshner) introduce and help you examine community based and youth-empowerment approaches to social and emotional learning. Some of these approaches address the impact of social and political systems, such as immigration and structural racism, on children’s social and emotional experiences.
This course is a part of the 5-course Specialization “The Teacher and Social Emotional Learning (SEL)”. Interested in earning 3 university credits from the University of Colorado-Boulder for this specialization? If so check out “How you can earn 3 university credits from the University of Colorado-Boulder for this specialization” reading in the first module of this course for additional information.
In this module we introduce three tensions within SEL, the first of which is the potential use of SEL as a means of managing student behavior. We investigate how behavior management strategies can lead to emotional manipulation, as well as how students of color are disproportionately impacted by these policies. Knowing that SEL programs are often adopted with the aim of improving classroom management and reducing problem behaviors, we explore how this can instead be approached through humanizing structures of management that promote student agency.
Graded: Module 1 Quiz
Culture, Context, and SEL
In this module we take up a second tension within SEL programming, the relative inattention to issues of culture and context in determining what SEL skills to promote. In situating SEL within larger cultural and structural contexts, we examine the need to consider issues of race, class, gender, sexuality, and culture in developing approaches to SEL.
Graded: Module 2 Quiz
Examining “Success”: Goals, Measurement, and Outcomes in SEL
In this module, we consider a third tension in SEL programming – what success looks like, and how we measure it. We examine the different ways student outcomes have been measured, as well as the issues surrounding the assessment of soft skills such as social and emotional development.
Graded: Module 3 Quiz
Moving Forward: A Critical Examination of the Self Competencies
In this module we move from articulating tensions within SEL to exploring ways forward. In this module, we focus on the two self-oriented competencies, self-awareness and self-management. In looking at more equity-oriented means of approaching self-awareness and self-management, we look at two examples in particular – mindfulness and testimonials.
Graded: Module 4 Quiz
Moving Forward: A Critical Examination of the Social Competencies
In this module we continue our focus on equity-oriented ways of approaching SEL with a focus on the socially oriented competencies, social awareness and relationship building. In particular, we examine how critical witnessing and youth participatory action research (YPAR) can enhance traditional approaches to SEL.
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