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Friday, May 25, 2018

3 Ways to Keep the Heat Off Teachers Implementing Social and Emotional Learning | Education Week

"Connecticut's 2007 Teacher of the Year shares how his school supports already busy teachers in implementing social and emotional learning" writes Christopher Poulos, Connecticut's 2007 Teacher of the Year, currently teaches Spanish and serves as Instructional Leader for the Humanities at Joel Barlow High School in Redding, CT.
 

Learning Is Social & Emotional is hosted by the Aspen Institute National Commission on Social, Emotional, and Academic Development, this group blog offers lessons from the field and best practices for students and educators.

As a teacher for the past 18 years, I know as well as any educator that new school initiatives bring with them the potential for teachers to feel overwhelmed. Where will we find the time to slot this new project into our already hectic schedules? Will we get any kind of support in making it happen? And hey―don't we do this already?

These are exactly the kinds of questions that my fellow teachers at Joel Barlow High School in Redding, Conn., had when we started implementing our social, emotional, and academic development initiative over the past few years. They are important and valid questions, and I think every school and district that wants to get serious about social and emotional learning has to be proactive about answering them upfront, as we have.

Our unique, collaborative team of eight teachers and administrators―called the EQ8―is constantly assessing and planning new ways to support teachers, making sure they feel heard, and ensuring that they have enough time to do what they are being asked to do. That atmosphere of collaboration and the sense that we're in it for the long haul has been critical to our success. Acknowledging that this work takes time and that the school is truly committed takes a lot of pressure off of teachers and makes them more receptive to changes.

I'd like to share 3 specific steps we've taken to ensure that our teachers aren't overwhelmed:
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Source: Education Week


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