Social-emotional learning: How emotional intelligence benefits students

Social-emotional learning: how emotional intelligence benefits students

What is Social-Emotional Learning?

“Social-emotional learning is a broad term referring to how students regulate their emotions, communicate with others, use compassion and empathy to understand the needs of other people, build relationships and make good decisions.”
– Psychologist Jennifer B. Rhodes.

To explain further social-emotional learning is developing self-awareness, self-control, interpersonal skills, which are vital to cope with everyday challenges and benefit children academically, socially, and professionally in life.

From effective problem-solving to self-discipline and from impulse control to emotion management, social-emotional learning provides a firm foundation for long-term effects on children. So, social-emotional learning is a behavioural framework that comprises several skills that affect success both in academics and in life beyond it.

Sherwood High is a multilingual, multicultural space with students from diverse social, economic backgrounds. We serve students with different motivations for multifaceted learning, positive behaviour, and academic performance. Sherwood High believes that social-emotional learning provides an important foundation for positive learning, which enhances students’ ability to succeed in school, in their profession and in life ahead. We will look at the importance of Social-emotional learning and how emotional intelligence benefits students in this blog.

Emotional intelligence:

Emotional intelligence is your children’s ability to identify, evaluate, express, and to control their emotions effectively. A good level of emotional intelligence will help your children use feelings to identify and assess situations, solve problems ,in communication, and make responsible decisions. Hence emotional intelligence (EQ) is important as it affects the quality of life because of its influence on human behaviour and relationships- which can impact everything from their relationship with classmates, peers to performance in the classroom and in school.

Children become confident and eager to explore ,when they are connected to themselves physically, mentally, and emotionally. They also work better together, with better communication and problem-solving abilities, when they work on emotional intelligence.

According to CASEL, Collaborative for Academic Social and Emotional Learning, the five competencies that comprise EQ are :

• Self-Awareness:

Self-awareness is the understanding of one’s emotions, goals, and values; it includes assessing one’s strengths and limitations, having positive outlooks, and possessing a well-grounded sense of optimism and self-efficacy. Self-awareness also requires the ability to recognise how one’s thoughts, feelings, and actions are interconnected.


Self-management is the combined skills and attitudes that facilitate the ability to regulate self-behaviour and one’s own emotions. It includes the abilities such as stress management, impulse control, delayed gratification and perseverance through problems and challenges to achieve educational and personal goals.

•Social awareness:

Social awareness is the ability to understand, feel compassion, and to empathise with those of different cultures and backgrounds. It involves understanding social norms for behaviour and recognising family, community, school resources and support.

•Relationship skills:

Relationship skills are necessary to establish and maintain healthy and rewarding relationships and to behave in accordance with social norms. Relationship skills involve clear communication, active listening, proactive cooperation, resisting social pressure, conflict negotiation and seeking help when necessary.

•Responsible decision making:

Responsible decision making is learning how to make choices that are constructive about personal behaviour and social interactions across diverse settings. It requires abilities to consider ethical standards, safety concerns, behavioural norms, avoiding risky behaviours, the health and well-being of self and others and to make a realistic evaluation of various actions and their consequences.

The benefits of emotional intelligence:

•Increased self-awareness and emotional literacy:

Self-awareness is the ability of being in touch with one’s feelings and recognising one’s feelings effectively. Emotionally intelligent students will have an increased level of self-awareness, which will help them take charge of their learning proactively.

•Emotion management:

Emotion management is being able to control one’s emotions effectively. By doing this, children can adjust to people with different temperaments and nature and can take practical decisions with controlled emotions.

•Stress management:

It is not true that only adults feel stress, children feel the same in many situations at schools and colleges. Stress is one of the biggest hurdles and can affect children drastically. Emotional intelligence will help children in stress management and can help them study even in stressful environments and tough times, particularly during important exams.

•Empathy development:

Empathy development is understanding and sharing what others are feeling and being more empathetic and compassionate towards others. This is important to make them a good human being and to set an example for other students not only in school colleges and university but also to be good examples for their own children and the society at large.

•Intrinsic motivation:

When children do something because it makes them feel good, is challenging, and leads to a sense of accomplishment is called Intrinsic motivation. Children with emotional intelligence are highly motivated and push themselves to meet their set goals.

•Better communication and decision-making:

Each person has different emotions and feelings within themselves such as fear, anger, anxiety, happiness et cetera and knowing where to be emotional and where not as important for students. Emotional intelligence will help children with this understanding and hence improve communication and linguistic skills in order to express their views and opinions without hesitation.

•Better relationships:

When children know to manage emotions, they can build relationships better. They cannot only blend well with new friends in order to study in a new environment, but can also exchange their thoughts with one another and give or take help when academically necessary.

Role of parents in helping build emotional intelligence in your children:

•Make an effort to identify emotions:

Talk to your children about what they are feeling and help them ascertain what the emotion is. Asked them to describe what they are feeling and help them understand if that particular emotion is happiness, frustration, anger, sadness or joy.

•Listen to your children’s feelings:

Talk to your children about how any particular situation has made them feel and what is the reason behind that feeling. Always help them in overcoming a negative emotion by talking to them about it or helping them talk about it.

•Having empathy:

It is important to let your children know that you understand how they are feeling.

•Instil positivity:

When you help children look at situations in a positive light they will find a solution to the problem rather than crib and whine for the same. They will learn not to complain about everything, but to proactively work on it.

•Teaching problem-solving skills:

By helping your children reflect on their emotions, you help them identify what makes them feel that way and find solutions to problems as a team.

•Positive encouragement:

Your children will learn good social-emotional skills when you create positive rules and validate their new learning.

•Modelling by example:

You can do this by openly communicating your own emotions with your children when you feel a certain way and how do you deal with such emotions.

In their busy day-to-day schedule of attending classes, co-curriculum ,assignments, tutorials, tests, and exams, our children fail to not only understand others’ emotions but also fail to take care of their own mental health and emotions. As parents, it is important for us to understand the importance of social-emotional learning in our children. Just like any other learning, social-emotional learning and emotional intelligence is a vital thing in our children’s lives and it will definitely help them to develop into a better person each day.

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