Third grade is a pivotal time in a student's life. They have moved beyond learning to read toward reading to learn. Across all content areas, my students are expected to read the content then analyze it through deeper thinking skills. Analyzing characters' motivations and feelings in text, understanding multi-step word problems and solving them correctly, and writing stories with complex story structure...these are just some of the skills my students tackle every day in our classroom. And, yet, there is still more required of my amazing third graders every day as we work together to not just grow their academic skills but to improve their social-emotional learning as well.
"Intelligence plus character - that is the goal of true education." These words from Martin Luther King Jr.
exemplify what is happening in my third-grade classroom every day. Each interaction my students have with each other, with me, and with other adults in our building is an opportunity to grow their academic and social intelligence. We work on building social-emotional learning experiences through things like sharing in our classroom community circle, resetting our brains in our calming corner, and starting our day with soft starts.
Kids come to school every day with different experiences and backgrounds that influence how they interact with their peers and teacher and how they will handle adversity and stress. One of my jobs as a teacher of these amazing young students is to help give them the tools they need to have positive relationships with themselves, each other, and the adults in their lives. So how do I do do this?
The tools from this project will help my students learn and practice prosocial behaviors and learn how to self-regulate their own feelings and emotions.
These "soft skills" are what my students need to be truly successful in their futures. Thanks to you, my classroom community will be a wealth of both academic AND social-emotional learning this year!
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