Leader in Me and Social-Emotional Learning
When we think of education, we often think about increasing our “smarts,” or in other words, our intelligence quotient (IQ). For decades, we’ve heard that IQ is an indicator of future success. And this is true—partially.
The reality is that intellectual ability is one of many factors that shape our future. In fact, research shows that emotional intelligence (EQ) is even more likely to contribute to long-term success and achievements.
What Is Emotional Intelligence or EQ?
EQ is the ability to recognize and distinguish the feelings and behaviors in one’s self, as well as in others, and allowing this information to influence a person’s thinking and actions.
Although EQ may not be as easy to test as IQ, those with high emotional intelligence are easy to recognize. These people are self-aware, know how to handle their emotions, deal well with stress, and are motivated to overcome obstacles. They thrive in a variety of situations, especially in our modern economy where most people work in teams that require collaborative effort.
How Does Leader in Me Promote Social-Emotional Learning?
Leader in Me focuses on developing students' ability to manage themselves and relate to others. During a child’s developmental years, he or she is building a deep emotional foundation that will provide the building blocks to future learning and growth. Leader in Me Schools understand that their students need to master areas such as reading, math, and science, as well as the social-emotional skills of listening, emotional regulation, and perspective taking. With the challenges of college applications and job placements ahead of them, students who understand and develop social-emotional skills possess an advantage for their future.
A Change in Paradigm
Today’s school-reform efforts are intensively focused on academic growth and, ultimately, improving the IQ of each student. Often these reforms fall short by failing to recognize the myriad of personal and interpersonal skills and tools students need to succeed. For example, students may have an extremely high IQ, yet still be precluded from future opportunities because they don't collaborate and interact with others.
It is becoming more and more evident that social-emotional skill development needs to play a more prominent role in schools. Leader In Me is helping students around the globe learn and develop social-emotional intelligence, building a new generation of thinkers, problem solvers, and leaders.