As interest grows in the benefits of social and emotional learning (SEL) for students and staff, a growing number of districts are adopting systemic strategies that embed SEL into every aspect of school life.

In a recent BloomBoard webinar, Kori Sanchez Smith, a Social Emotional Learning advocate, spoke about the four components of implementing social and emotional learning across Atlanta Public Schools:

  • Explicit Instruction
  • Integrating with Curriculum
  • Integration with Instructional Pedagogy
  • Beyond the Classroom

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By considering all four components of SEL implementation, leaders are able to:

  • Identify goals for each area
  • Design support for implementation
  • Identify systems for monitoring implementation
  • Determine assessment metrics

#1: Explicit Instruction

  • Explicitly teaches needed skills
  • Supports needs of highly transitional populations
  • Allows for consistency of approach and vocabulary across the school
  • Connects tiers of support and can enhance afterschool

#2: Integration with Curriculum

  • Highlights and enhances aspects of state standards that reflect CASEL’s Five Core Competencies
  • Encourages SEL implementation throughout the day
  • Entry point for SEL standards

#3 Integration with Instructional Pedagogy

  • Student-centered instruction
  • Student voice and advocacy
  • Academic rigor and relevance
  • Pairings, grouping, and circling up
  • Problem-based learning

#4 Beyond the Classroom

  • Schoolwide essential agreements
  • Systems, structures, and routines
  • Celebrations and acknowledgments
  • Relationship with parents and the community


Social & Emotional Learning

A Systematic Approach that Leads to Student Success

Atlanta Public Schools and CASEL discuss what it means to approach Social and Emotional Learning systemically — what is working, what is challenging, what results they are experiencing, and how this important work is paving the way for other districts.
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