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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in social emotional learning

Posted by on in What If?

shy student

I hate to admit that, in 36 years as an educational consultant and nine as a radio host responsible for finding topics to explore, I hadn’t given shy children any thought – until I came across a book called Quiet at School: An Educator’s Guide to Shy Children. That’s when it occurred to me that not only do shy children have unique challenges in classrooms; also, those challenges are mostly known only to the children themselves.

And that, of course, is the crux of the matter. If the squeaky wheel gets the grease, the kids with “louder,” more disruptive issues are going to get the teacher’s attention. In the meantime, shy children sit silently struggling.

With that in mind, I invited Quiet at School co-author Robert Coplan to talk with me on Studentcentricity. Educator Melanie Taylor joined us.

We talked about the most common indicators of shyness in children, and how they might look different from early childhood to adolescence. And I asked Rob about the teacher’s natural inclination to encourage children to speak up more and raise their hands to answer questions. Is that actually the way to help shy children succeed in school?

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Posted by on in Social Emotional Learning



I spend my days helping children learn from their mistakes.

Some as young as four-years old. Children who haven't been on this Earth very long. Children who still look for our hand when they walk down the hallway. Children who sometimes call us Mom or Dad.

And here's the thing. They do share their mistakes with us. We tell them that it's okay to make mistakes. That that's how we learn. It's all a part of growing up.

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Posted by on in Social Emotional Learning


Small Acts Of Kindness

Small acts of kindness change the world. The grand deeds committed by those with means are important too, but they are not nearly as powerful as the billions of little things little people do every single day to help, recognize, and appreciate others. The longer I walk life the more convinced I am that it is the compound effect of the seemingly insignificant acts that sends the biggest ripples through the universe and alters the world most profoundly.

This morning as I was about to turn onto the expressway I always take to work a woman with two dogs started crossing the street. She hesitated seeing my car come to a halt at the intersection. I could've easily just kept turning, maybe cut her off, or maybe make it just in time, but I did not. I waited. And I am happy I did. It is because of what happened next.

The woman continued walking, looked at me through my windshield, gave me a big smile, and waved. Of course, an involuntary reflex forced a big toothy grin onto my face and I waved back. And it felt damn good!

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Posted by on in General


If you have never had the pleasure of watching Still Mine, I highly reccomend that you do as soon as possible. It was one of the most powerful movies I have ever seen. But this piece is not about the movie, rather it is about the impact that one scene in particular had on my thinking.

In the very beginning of the movie there is a scene in which an 87-year-old grandfather tells his 9-year-old grandson about the time he had the courage to walk down to the New York Yankees dugout to get a baseball autographed by Babe Ruth. The grandfather was quite proud of the autograph and was hopeful that this story would resonate with his grandson.

It didn’t.

It didn’t because his 9-year-old grandson had no idea who Babe Ruth was and therefore the story meant nothing to him. The grandfather was incredulous and asked his grandson how he could have possibly reached the age of nine not knowing who Babe Ruth was.

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Posted by on in Social Emotional Learning

Unless you're a former lobotomy victim emotions affect everything you do and are present everywhere in your life. And that's a good thing! Emotions help us understand the universe, play a key part in our decision-making, and are crucial in our relationships.

If you're an educator or a parent you observe daily the power emotions have in the lives of children: They can absolutely lift them and motivate greatness or completely overwhelm them and wreak havoc.

There is a delicate balance between our "rational" brain and our "emotional" brain: Not enough emotion and you're basically a robot, too much and you're that weird crazy person everyone talks about behind their back and is at least slightly scared of.

So what do we do to help kids use just the right amount appropriate to the situation they find themselves in? Teach them to regulate. How? We boost their EQ. EQ? Yes EQ. Just look below...


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