Covid-19 & Social and Emotional Learning — A teachable Moment!

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With the onset of the Covid-19 virus, education, public health and families have a unique opportunity to partner and rally around for the enhanced health and well-being of children and they can do it using Social and Emotional Learning (SEL).

While young people don’t appear to be at risk for Covid-19, this is a teachable moment for them to learn and practice healthy habits for themselves and their community.  Schools are teaching SEL across multiple contexts every day.  Now we can use SEL on this very important public health issue.  Here are the five SEL Core Competencies and how they can be put into action in the arena of public health:

  1. Self-Awareness – Being aware of their emotions around illness; knowing the adults who support them; and demonstrating personal responsibility such as washing hands, and covering their mouths when they sneeze.  
  2. Self-Management – Identifying and calming any fearthey may have about illness, and demonstrate integrity by staying home and not going to school or events if they are sick. 
  3. Social Awareness –  Show compassion, kindness and support for those who are at risk of infection or are quarantined.
  4. Relationship Skills – Use positive communication and social skills when speaking with others who are ill, having a tough time remaining calm or not practicing proper hygiene.
  5. Responsible Decision Making – Act responsibly by taking care of their healthand being a positive role model in school and in the community.

By teaching and more importantly role modeling these competencies on this current public health issue, we will enhance the health and well being for future generations. 

For the latest information from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), please visit: www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html.

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