One of my major focuses in the classroom was promoting social and emotional learning (SEL) in the classroom. To implement SEL in my classroom, I used several strategies.
- Morning Meeting – In our morning meeting, students have the opportunity to give gratitude to each other. I also set up goals for the day and review “glows and grows” from the previous day. A grow is usually something the students need to focus on and it helps me establish the goal of the day. Sometimes we also play an icebreaker game to get students excited for the day!
- Sparks Jar – This is a big jar I leave in my classroom where students can write down on a post-it note a positive action they observed another student doing based on our 5 character strengths. These sparks are later read so that students can see how people have been making good choices inside the classroom. These methods have also improved my students’ social awareness because it helps them realize that good actions are recognized and rewarded. Students can leave a “spark” in the Sparks Jar when doing independent work.
I also utilized SEL resources on Twinkl including an “I can calm myself down” poster for specific students who had trouble managing their anger. They look at the poster in a secluded part of the classroom and then repeat to themselves the different strategies on the poster. When they successfully calm themselves down, they give themselves a sticker. Eventually multiple stickers lead to a prize. This has helped my students with their Self-Awareness and Self Management. Overall these various strategies helps promote a positive classroom culture and environment where students hold themselves accountable for their actions and behavior.