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Beyond Textbooks

Supporting Social Emotional Learning in Young Children


Chivonne Pierotti, Vail Inclusive Preschool


What is Social Emotional Learning? Social emotional learning is the process by which children learn to understand and manage emotions, maintain positive relationships, and make responsible decisions. It is a complex process that involves the integration of a child’s thoughts, emotions, and behavior in order to develop competence in these five areas:

  1. Self-awareness – Having an accurate perception of ourselves and being able to recognize our own emotional states.
  2. Self-management – The ability to use self-awareness to handle stress and impulses, as well as persevere and consider options for dealing with feelings in a way that’s socially accepted.
  3. Social awareness – The understanding of our relationships with others, and the development of respect and acceptance of others who may be different than us.
  4. Relationship skills – Mastering the complexities of relationships involves becoming aware of others, being attuned to the emotions of others, and understanding the impact of our actions on others.
  5. Responsible decision making – The ability to make a decision about what actions or responses we’ll choose in reaction to our emotions within the context of our relationships with others.

This is a useful website that has a ton of information for parents, teachers, and caregivers. Check it out!


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