From You to We: Building Blocks for Transformative SEL
Professional Development Series Based on True Stories by Teens
As educators, we have been called upon to reenvision how we approach social and emotional learning (SEL) in schools. We can no longer put our focus on “changing” young people. We must focus on transforming systems and schools so they are equitable, while recognizing that the resources to do so already reside in ourselves, our families, and our communities.
Transformative SEL, as defined by Robert Jagers of CASEL, asks us to navigate how to redistribute power in schools. But, where to start? This work begins with educators reflecting on their own SEL strengths and journeys before moving on to how to collaborate with students to address systemic inequities and improve individual and collective well-being. Since supervisors must also play a role in supporting their staff and students’ SEL growth if they want to create transformative education communities, we have a session devoted to those that supervise others.
In this series of workshops, we explore the power of storytelling—by both youths and adults—in order to move from treating students as the objects of SEL instruction to seeing them as co-learners and collaborators in creating equitable schools and organizations. It is through this work that we answer the call of transformative SEL.
In this series of workshops we explore the power of storytelling—by both youths and adults—in order to move from treating students as the objects of SEL instruction to seeing them as co-learners and collaborators in creating equitable schools and organizations. It is through this work that we answer the call of transformative SEL.
These workshops are offered sequentially and must be taken in the order presented. Participants are welcome to only partake in workshop 1.
From You to Me: An Introduction to Transformative SEL for Adults Who Work With Youth
In this four-hour session, we first focus on ourselves as educators and people, not our students. We will share our stories, experiences, and strengths, and in doing so, see ourselves as learners in community with one another. This is where we lay the groundwork for transformative SEL in our schools.
After we reflect on our own SEL superpowers, we turn our attention to what we can learn and create with our students. The typical view of educators’ jobs is to teach—or unfortunately at times, to fix—our students, as if we have all the answers. Transformative SEL calls on us to view our jobs differently. In the second part of this session, we focus on the mindsets that we may need to change to do so, as well as the practices that allow us to build collaborative relationships across the usual student-teacher boundaries.
More Than Supervision: Supporting Staff and Students in Your Transformative SEL Journey
How do supervisors build a culture that values transformative SEL and taps into the strengths of adults and youth alike? Supervisors in this session will reflect not only on what support their students need, but also how to support the adult educators—including themselves—who will be key to co-creating an affirming and welcoming school community. (Prerequisite: From You to Me)
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