For the first quarter of the school year, Woodside’s SEL focus has been community building through the lens of diversity and inclusion. What this means, is that in order for students to feel like they belong in their class, they need to trust that their teacher and peers accept them for the ways that they are similar and different to each other. In order to support the students in getting to know their class online, the SEL committee provided ideas for teachers to get to know students and build community in this unusual learning environment. These ideas included getting to know you questions, and how to think about building relationships in the context of cultural depth. We look forward to connecting with students as they start to return to campus! And we look forward to connecting with you again about our next theme: Gratitude.
This year, the SEL team and your teachers will use the headings of Know Yourself, Choose Yourself, Give Yourself to help provide a school-wide SEL focus. During this first trimester, under the heading of Know Yourself, teachers will discuss with students such topics as mindfulness, responsibility, integrity and self-advocacy.
Why do we want our students to know themselves?
To build intrapersonal awareness
To communicate emotional feelings and needs
To manage academic and social pressures
To understand how they learn best
To understand that their feelings affect their behaviors
Throughout the year, SEL concepts will be woven into other curriculum and addressed through more targeted activities and lessons. We will use SEL Toolbox Lessons that build emotional vocabulary, awareness of layers of feelings and emotional thermometers. We will discuss personal boundaries, methods of de-escalating, conflict resolution, and more.
When children feel safe at school and are encouraged to reflect upon, understand, and express their emotions, they are more prepared for academic success. Together we can build a community and culture that is respectful, responsible, inclusive, and mindful. In this environment, our children will flourish and grow to be both outstanding students and caring people.