Research shows that incorporating social and emotional learning (SEL) in instruction helps students understand and manage emotions, personal challenges and difficulties, and relationships with others. Consistent and dynamic SEL teaches students the skills they need to deal with life in and out of the classroom.
Krista Walker, Professional Development Program Manager with Boxlight-EOS Education, recently spoke with Larry Jacobs from Equity and Access Pre K-12 (ace-ed.org) about how teachers can implement social-emotional learning using the tools and resources available to them, including technology. Walker has 25 years of experience in education, including working with education technology, promoting accessibility and inclusive practices, encouraging community engagement, advancing 21st century enrichment, and helping educators include social and emotional learning into classroom instruction.
Jacobs started the conversation by pointing out that Boxlight is a technology company that now offers professional development services to help teachers use tech tools for supporting social-emotional learning. Walker commented that SEL is not a new concept but given the recent shifts in teaching and learning environments, many districts are realizing a new focus for students. She commented, “(Social and emotional learning) has really become a priority in a lot of districts that maybe have talked about it previously but now are really looking at an impactful way to make it part of their norm, their culture.”
Walker shared teachers oftentimes feel that implementing social-emotional learning is a topic they are not qualified to teach so Boxlight-EOS helps teachers understand SEL and break it down in manageable pieces, using the technology available in their classrooms to support them. This includes introductory conversations to assess the tools teachers know, use or need to use, and their confidence about using these tools proactively. She compared these conversations to those teachers will have with their own students to help them identify weaknesses, strengths, and develop plans of action. Walker said, “By having these conversations with the teachers...we can start to build on something that maybe feels uncomfortable with things that are already comfortable in their classroom.”
Boxlight-EOS has developed workshops that help teachers use educational technology tools familiar to them such as Google Workspace or Microsoft Teams, interactive displays, classroom software and learning platforms such as MimioConnect®, and digital apps. By learning how these tools can help their students engage and express themselves in the classroom, teachers can help to foster a supportive environment.
For more about how technology can be used to support social and emotional learning, go to boxlight.com/educator-stories-videos-podcasts and listen to Technology to Support Social Emotional Learning.
To explore Boxlight-EOS Education professional development offerings, including content focused on social-emotional learning, go to boxlight.com/professional-development.
Interested in reading about ways to incorporate SEL in your classroom? Click here for a list of blogs on this key topic: Social-Emotional Learning.
Click here to register: Building Partnerships to Support Social-Emotional Learning.
Download a free copy of 5 Key Indicators of Social-Emotional Learning.