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STRONG KIDS Programs Promoting Children Mental Health Through Social and Emotional Learning

STRONG KIDS Programs Promoting Children Mental Health Through Social and Emotional Learning

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STRONG KIDS Programs Promoting Children Mental Health Through Social and Emotional Learning

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  1. STRONG KIDS ProgramsPromoting Children Mental Health Through Social and Emotional Learning Duane M Isava, PhD, NCSP Anne Arundel County Public Schools July 14, 2009

  2. Mental Health Productive in activities, maintains fulfilling relationships, possesses ability to adapt and cope Mental Health Problems Distressing symptoms, but insufficient intensity or duration to meet the criteria for any mental disorder Mental Illness Diagnosable disorder; alterations in thinking, mood, or behavior associated; impaired functioning

  3. Student-professional ratios are exceedingly high Percentage of students “at-risk” continues to increase Many individually-delivered interventions have strong empirical support but… We have heard the big words but… The Challenge

  4. What is Social Emotional Learning? Systematic efforts to enhance social and emotional competence, promote interpersonal and emotional adjustment, using effective curricula A foundation for academic success: students with social-emotional deficits are more likely to experience school failure

  5. SEL Promotes Success for All Students Supports pupil’s mastery of academic skills Nurtures their emotional life Teaches them how to get along well with others and make responsible decisions Provides them with a strong moral compass Promotes concern for others

  6. From the New York Times: Academic Benefits of SEL An average student enrolled in a social and emotional learning program ranks at least 10 percentile points higher on achievement tests, has better attendance and classroom behavior, likes school more, has better grades, and is less likely to be disciplined. Source: August, 2005 New York Times article by Weissberg and Shriver, based on research by Weissberg and Durlak (

  7. Semi-scripted, social-emotional learning curricula: prevention/intervention of emotional problems and promotion of resilience Developmentally appropriate Practical and easy to use- wide range of appropriate settings, purposes, and leaders Brief: 10-12 lessons, 35-50 minutes each Empirically-based & built on principles of instruction Based on the premise that social-emotional skills must be specifically taught and learned, just like academic skills About the Strong Kids Programs

  8. Materials needed Purpose and Objectives Review previous lesson Introduce new lesson Vocabulary Practice Application Closure Homework handout Lesson Organization

  9. Introductory lesson Administer pre-test Explains purpose, rules Key Concepts Makes curriculum relevant to students Introduces emotional strength training LESSON 1: Introduction

  10. Focuses on identifying and understanding emotions Trains how to think about emotions Define emotions- comfortable or uncomfortable Fun-word activity Scenarios Lesson 2: Understanding Your Feelings (Part 1)

  11. Expressing feelings appropriately All feelings are valid All emotions are “normal” How context influences expressing emotions Guided discussion LESSON 3: Understanding Your Feelings (Part 1)

  12. Define anger and relevance of anger Anger vs. aggression Anger model Identify steps for delaying impulsive anger reactions Appropriate ways to express anger LESSON 4: Dealing with Anger

  13. Based on principles of empathy training Learn to identify feelings and perspective of others Considers body language and facial expressions Role playing scenarios LESSON 5: Understanding Other People’s Feelings

  14. Principles of cognitive restructuring, cognitive therapy Teaches students to become aware of their thinking and reasoning Six thinking errors Assigning values to emotions Determining the level of the emotion LESSON 6: Clear Thinking(Part 2)

  15. Supplement 6.2 Six Common Thinking Errors

  16. Supplement 6.3 Situations and Thinking Errors 1. Dakota’s parents are getting a divorce. He thinks that this is all his fault because he has been getting into trouble lately. 2. Marcella’s teacher suggested that she run for class president. She decided not to run because she knew that no one would vote for her. 3. Farah got a bad grade on her spelling test. Now she thinks that she is the worst student in the class. 4. Ahmad’s soccer coach gave him a lot of praise and encouragement in soccer practice. As Ahmad was leaving practice, the coach mentioned that Ahmad should practice his dribbling skills at home. Ahmad was upset about how poorly he played at practice. 5. Ling was grounded for not doing her chores. She thought to herself, “I am always the bad kid. My sister Kimmy is always the good kid.” 6. Latisha got in trouble from her parents for taking grape juice into the living room. Her brother bumped into her and the grape juice spilled all over the floor and stained the carpet. Her parents told her she had to clean it up because they had told her not to take the grape juice out of the kitchen. Latisha felt that her brother should be the one to clean it up.

  17. Demonstrates techniques to challenge and change negative, irrational, maladaptive thoughts, and beliefs Reframing thinking errors Re-labeling thinking errors LESSON 7: Clear Thinking (Part 2)

  18. Identifies negative thoughts and thinking patterns Tells how to replace them with more realistic positive thoughts Optimism defined Learned optimism training: ABCDE plan for optimism Locus of control training LESSON 8:The Power of Positive Thinking

  19. Steps for interpersonal problem-solving Identify problem/ Brainstorm solutions Choose one Agree Conflict defined Practice “problem” scenarios LESSON 9: Solving People Problems

  20. Teaches self-awareness of stress levels Defines and identifies physical and mental signs of stress Active and passive methods of relaxation: 1. Slow breathing 2. Muscle relaxation Techniques for dealing with tension: 1. Talking to friends 2. Facing your fears Lesson 10: Letting Go of Stress

  21. How to set and attain goals Focuses on increasing engagement in positive activities Recognize that defining personal values are important for goal setting Shows a link between being active and having a healthy mood Lesson 11: Achieving Your Goals

  22. Review and re-teach where needed Closure activities and education on what to do if more help is need Optional post-testing Lesson 12: Finishing Up!

  23. Teaching Strategies Do as I say and no one gets hurt!

  24. Class is mandatory Incentives Build a consensus and partnership Familiarity of the students Class expectations Tag teaming Splitting the lesson Instructor models first Generalizing beyond class Teaching Strategies

  25. Researched in the following settings: • General education classrooms (prevention) (British Columbia, Oregon, Utah, Wisconsin, and Illinois) • Pull-out program for at-risk students (early intervention) (Oregon and Utah) • Special education ED/BD classrooms (Illinois) • Residential treatment/day treatment settings (Kansas) • The evidence is encouraging: • All studies have shown meaningful changes in students’ knowledge of healthy social-emotional behavior • All studies have produced strong user satisfaction and social validity • Some studies have shown significant improvements in student affect, reductions in problems • Minimal cost and time commitment, and strong user satisfaction

  26. Information and Supports • For more information: • • • For Technical Support: • Dr. Duane Isava- • Dr. Kenneth Merrell-