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Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(3), 143; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8030143

Walking the Talk: Enhancing Future Teachers’ Capacity to Embed Social-Emotional Learning in Middle Years Classrooms

School of Education and Professional Studies, Griffith University, University Drive, Meadowbrook QLD 4131, Australia
Received: 1 August 2018 / Revised: 3 September 2018 / Accepted: 6 September 2018 / Published: 10 September 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Middle Grades Education)
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Abstract

Early adolescence marks a developmental period during which there is a window of opportunity to explicitly teach and make a significant difference in a young person’s development of social and emotional competencies (SECs). All students can benefit from the inclusion of SECs and failing to develop such SECs can result in poor outcomes in several domains including personal, social, and academic outcomes. Research on social and emotional programs for young adolescent learners has shown that a ‘skills and drills’ approach is far less effective than focusing on mind-sets and classroom climate. Although the role teachers play in explicitly teaching and supporting young adolescents’ SECs has been recognised, teachers have reported a lack of confidence in knowing what, and how to teach these skills. This paper reports on a teacher education course that embedded social and emotional skills into both coursework design and assessment expectations. Results drawn from an analysis of students’ responses to their main assessment task showed that pre-service teachers had a growing awareness of SECs and, in particular, were able to recognise the importance of focusing on the building of students’ SECs to support academic success across a broad range of curriculum areas. View Full-Text
Keywords: middle school; young adolescents; social and emotional competencies; teacher training middle school; young adolescents; social and emotional competencies; teacher training
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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Main, K. Walking the Talk: Enhancing Future Teachers’ Capacity to Embed Social-Emotional Learning in Middle Years Classrooms. Educ. Sci. 2018, 8, 143.

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