A Joyful Place

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One School at a Time

Posted by ajoyfulplace on July 26, 2009 at 3:35 PM

My mind is always churning up new ventures;even the ones I have going at the time I feel the need to review or at least keep them fresh. My new venture I am going to call One-school-at-a-time. This is inspired by the project I have been carrying out at one particular school and which I now want to take  to all other schools- one at a time.


For the past 7 months I conducted a Social and Emotional Learning programme at a primary school here in Trinidad and Ihave been very pleased with the success. The two most crucial successes were that the entire school got involved and that they persisted with the programme for the two terms and are willing to continue. Also very heartening was thefact that the parents jumped on board with a day long workshop.

Here is an excerpt from the report of this first phase:


At the start of the programme teachers admittedthat they knew very little about Social and Emotional Learning. The awarenessof SEL as a crucial part of teaching and learning had certainly increasedthrough the programme. At the end of the 2-day workshop teachers felt confidentabout their own understanding of SEL and were looking forward to implementingthe basic lessons in the classroom.


The feedback sessions indicated that thestudents were responding positively and eagerly to the lessons. The studentswere developing good listening skills and were responding in more appropriateways to situations in the classroom. Some students also reported improvedrelationships with their siblings at home. This contributed to the release ofsome of the pressure on the teachers to listen constantly to students, to address their emotional needs and to deal with behaviour issues.


An important aspect of the programme wasbuilding support among the teachers. They also learned to use the supportivelistening skills to maintain their own emotional well-being throughout theprogramme. They too indicated improvements in their relationships andinteracting with others outside of the school setting.


I have also started a project at apre-school. We have only done a parents' workshop so far but we have outlinedthe sessions for teachers and parents for the upcoming school year.


I WILL fulfill my goal of incorporatingSocial and Emotional Learning into all schools in the Caribbean even if I do it one school at a time.





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1 Comment

Reply Karen
3:37 PM on July 28, 2009 
What a wonderful programme. I know it's an idea whose time has come. Thank you for your wonderful work at building the relationships that make schools increasingly joyful places for learners and leaders alike. The process sounds very close to Participatory Action Research which is what I'm studying in grad school right now. What a marvelous application. All my best.

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