Have you ever thought of learning effective strategies to manage the challenges you face in life? Or becoming more self-aware to enhance your well-being and personal safety? These are some of the questions students in Gr 6, Gr 7, and Gr 8 are investigating in the newly designed course on Emotional Literacy (EL). The course, which runs for one teaching block per week, aims at developing Approaches to Learning skills (ATL) through socio-emotional lenses. ATL skills are a set of approaches that build learners’ capacity to become an effective thinker, socially responsible, and individually balanced.
At B.D. Somani we think to accomplish two connected objectives through the EL course. First, ATL skills are in high demand in our fast-changing world. We face unpredictable shifts, increasingly complex systems in which we are required to take decisions and act sometimes outside of our expertise. Developing a set of skills through which students investigate contemporary challenges to fully understand them, cultivate passion in themselves and others, and take action ethically is paramount for the progression of humanity.
At the same time, we have now experienced over one year of remote learning. This has brought some challenges to both the education world and the wellbeing of our students. It is for this reason that mental health and emotional learning have been integrated into the EL course; we believe that students need to educate both their mind and heart, and be more able to manage their emotions, especially when facing specific challenges in their life.
In the first few weeks, we looked at what emotions are and what we can do to better understand the emotional reactions to specific events in our life. We introduced the concept of journaling, a strategy used to explore our thinking, our feelings, and who we are. By keeping a process journal, learners are becoming more self-aware of their inner life and how it impacts their body and behaviour. We discussed the wheel of emotions (see the visual below) and engaged students in selecting a few emotions they experienced, and what happens when they meet those emotions in terms of feeling, body, and behaviour. We are now moving on to focusing on challenges students have identified in their life they want to manage more effectively, what aspects of these challenges are under our control, and what aspects do not depend on us.
Stay tuned! More to come from the Emotional Literacy Team.
This post has been authored by Mr. Emanuele with Ms. Shraddha and Mr. Suraj.