How do Educators support Social and Emotional Learning for Adolescents in High School?
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The purpose of this research paper is to determine how to effectively create and integrate a program that addresses social and emotional development of high school students. The central question explores how we are currently supporting social and emotional development of adolescents in high school. The sub-questions explore what programs are currently in place, what common elements these programs have, and what specific skills these programs address in regards to social and emotional development. There are many programs that are currently in place at an elementary level, but minimal at a high school. Of those that are in place, there are common key characteristics and key skills that are addressed in the Programs. Programs must cater to the culture of the school, be continued over a period of time, emphasize relationships, and provide a sense of autonomy for students. Programs should involve skills in all three concepts of emotional processes, social and interpersonal skills, and cognitive regulation (Jones & Bouffard, 2012). Research clearly indicates that there is a lack of programs implemented in high schools that target social and emotional learning. There is strong evidence to support the benefits of social and emotional learning on school connectedness, student mental health, and academic achievement. There are currently many programs that support social and emotional development at an elementary level, but these programs almost completely diminish as students reach their adolescent years. Programs that target social and emotional learning must be implemented into high schools to ensure that we are creating contributing, self-sufficient members of society.