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Focus Area 2


Support staff in modeling SEL competencies, mindsets, and skills throughout the school community.

Adults are constantly modeling their social and emotional competence (Jones & Weissbourd, 2013). Staff who model high levels of the five core competencies offer students positive examples of how to navigate stress and frustration and maintain positive relationships. Modeling SEL also helps set the “tone” at school. These activities and recommendations can be used to encourage staff to model strong social and emotional skills.

Just as it’s important to model SEL for students in the classroom, it’s also important for adults to consistently model social and emotional competencies with each other. SEL teams can support staff in reflecting on and developing specific practices for modeling SEL.

You can also model SEL as a team by intentionally fostering a culture of appreciation among adults, including creating consistent opportunities for public and private acknowledgments of staff. Staff who receive recognition for their learning and collaboration efforts are more satisfied with and engaged in their work (Cataldo, 2011) and are more likely to continue modeling social and emotional competencies for peers and students.

One way the SEL team can foster a culture of appreciation is by providing opportunities for staff to acknowledge peers who exemplify the shared agreements, and recognizing how they have helped them or the group. This process creates a model for how teachers can build positive classroom environments and strengthen their relationships with students.

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