As I reread a book I co-wrote, Integrating SEL Into Your Curriculum, I am considering the many ways that I'll update the curriculum program this year to include worthy SEL experiences.
I've already written a number of posts about this including the following:
More importantly I've started thinking about specifically where these lessons will be embedded into the fifth grade year (see bottom of post). A list that gets longer and longer making me realize that I should probably organize all of this in a website instead.
Today I'm focused on social awareness. We know that when children are socially aware, they succeed with greater success. There were many activities listed in the book to help students gain a good idea of the differing behaviors, perspectives, and actions students in a class will take when given similar problems or questions. The activities help students to understand themselves and others, and this valuable perspective taking will help them when it comes to the many collaborative activities that make up the curriculum program, activities which help students learn more know and gain important collaborative skill for our increasingly interdependent world. As I thought about how I could embed all these activities, I made some specific decisions below, and I also added to the list of activities I'll embed throughout the year. Some of these activities such as the deserted island activity can be easily left for a substitute teacher on a day that you will be out so that students continue to build their awareness of one another.
Some of the activities in this part of the book fit nicely into early year team building such as the Alphabet Actors activity.
First Weeks of School - Building Classroom Culture and Getting to Know One Another