As we move into the age of AI and machine learning, the everchanging landscape of technology demands continuous and vigorous upgradation. Prospective Employers are however looking beyond mere technical and cognitive skills, they are on the lookout for yet another skill, EQ or Emotional Quotient.
That’s correct, thus Social Emotional skills are now considered more important in determining future employment. So let us take a look at how these skills can be fostered using MS tools.
What is SEL?
Social and emotional learning (SEL) is the process through which children:
Understand and manage emotions
Maintain positive Relationships
Feel and show Empathy
Set and achieve positive goals
Make responsible decisions.
Developing these core life abilities is critical to a child’s development, as it directly correlates to success and happiness as an adult.
Research has shown that there is a Happiness Skill Set Combining these skills with academic development using technology creates high-quality learning experiences and environments that empower students to be more effective contributors in their classrooms today and in their workplaces and communities tomorrow.
Using existing technology like the powerful ed tech tools like flipgrid, sway, skype in the classroom , one note etc, we can actually implement SEL in the classroom and integrate it seamlessly into the curriculum.
Being Thankful using FlipGrid
Let us take a look at Flip grid. It is an excellent tool to enhance student voice and can be used in a variety of ways. We can use it to address the SEL skill of gratitude
The idea is to create a grid and share it with the title Gratitude wall.
Create a FlipGrid and share with the studentsName it the Gratitude Wall
Ask each student in your class to recall 3 people who helped them during the day; a classmate, peon or teacher.
With all those feelings coming out in the form of words, students develop a habit of being thankful.(Link : https://flipgrid.com/)
Kindness Diary using Sway
The next tool in this array is Sway. Its easy to use interface and design options make it the ideal tool for digital story telling. You can use Sway to inculcate kindness in students.
Let Each student can create a Sway , “My Kindness Diary”.
They can use it to chronicle their acts of kindness.
The stories can be from their everyday life experiences.At the end of the month let the students present their sway.
Writing these experiences will inculcate the habit of being kind to others and sharing will inspire others.(Link: https://sway.office.com/)
Building positive relationships and Empathy using Skype in the classroom
Skype in the classroom is yet another incredible provided by Microsoft for educators to connect classrooms. It provides opportunities for students to interact with peers across the globe from within their geographical location on projects, sharing and appreciating cultures.
A fine example of using Skype to inculcate empathy in students would be to collaborate on various projects addressing Global Issues.
Teachers can use Skype to connect classrooms globally.
They can create activities to facilitate virtual cultural exchange programs.
Also create opportunities to let students participate in global projectsTeachers can take up a cause like a project on one of the sustainable Global goals to add purpose.
Organize Virtual Field trips to places like for example the Amazon forest. This will help students understand the problem of deforestation.
It is an incredible tool which can be used to create sound, long lasting human relationships. Activities like virtual field trips and cultural exchange also help develop Empathy instudents which is a core life skill.
One Note ClassNotebook for Self Awareness
Tools like one note and immersive reader cater to the differentiated learning needs of the classroom. This helps to implement stress free, inclusive classroom with clear learning outcomes for each child.
Using One Note, a teacher can easily implement differentiated learning say for a class of 50 students.
This will help each student set up positive , achievable goals and learn at their own pace.
Also, teachers can choose specific lessons to teach through immersive reader for slow learners and under achievers.
This will make the classroom a happy and positive place for students with learning disabilities thus helping them take charge of their own learning.
These tools not only improve student engagement and confidence due to the personalization of content, but also encourage students to engage in the key SEL skill of self awareness; that is, to examine their own progress and understanding of academic content thus helping them set up positive goals .(Link: https://products.office.com/en-us/onenote/digital-note-taking-app)
How Does SEL Benefit Learners of Today?
According to a research report by edutopia, Social Emotional Learning has helped improve teaching learning outcomes by almost 11 percentile in the case study involving 213 programs.
It not only benefits the learners emotionally making them less aggressive and more sensitive, but also improves their academic performance. The diagram below shows how it benefits the learners
We can say that Social Emotional learning in a classroom helps students become compassionate and they grow up to become just and peaceful citizens
PS: You can find many more tips and classroom hacks for SEL in the “Hacking Happiness” app. Download from Google Playstore.