social emotional intelligence
Sep 14 2023

Social and Emotional Intelligence: An Introductory Guide

Positive Action Staff
The social and emotional intelligence definition refers to the ability to be aware of one’s own feelings in the present moment. In an academic setting, this includes important skills such as being able to communicate effectively with others, work in groups, and control impulses.

Since emotions affect intellectual processes, students who have been provided with instruction in social and emotional intelligence are better behaved and have a more positive attitude than those who haven’t received this type of instruction.

What are the Components of Social Emotional Intelligence?

Social-emotional intelligence helps students feel good about themselves while doing positive actions. Thoughts, actions and feelings about self are all intertwined, and socio-emotional intelligence provides instructions in specific components, which include:

  • Self-awareness – Instruction in self-awareness helps students learn to intentionally build positive thoughts and positive behaviors.
  • Self-managementStudents learn to manage their time, energy, talents and money, which can improve impulse control.
  • Social awareness – Positive interactions with others requires the ability to empathize with people who may have come from much different backgrounds or cultures. Besides growing in personal awareness and empathy, students learn to be aware of the feelings and actions of people in their support system including family, friends and community.
  • Relationship management and social skills – Students learn to treat other people with cooperation and respect, and learn how positive treatment of others can lead to improved relationships.

Improved communication and responsible decision-making skills can have a positive impact on learning. Students who may have been fearful or anxious before learning social-emotional intelligence often become able to learn more quickly. Social emotional awareness can help set students on a path for success in school and ultimately in their adult lives.

Social Intelligence vs. Emotional Intelligence

Although social intelligence and emotional intelligence are related, they aren’t exactly the same thing. Emotional versus social intelligence can be thought of as the difference between the way you or your students relate to yourselves versus the way you relate to each other.

When comparing emotional intelligence and social intelligence, emotional intelligence involves self-awareness, self-regulation and self-control. Social intelligence is less focused on one’s own emotions or reactions and more focused on sensitivity toward the feelings, moods and motivations of others and the ability to interact with others as part of a group.

How to Increase Social Emotional Intelligence for Your Students

The most effective learning environment is one in which students experience lessons that are meaningful, challenging and engaging in a supportive environment. Increasing social emotional intelligence is an important part of providing students with a foundation for academic performance and positive social behavior.

Different tactics can be used to teach emotional and social intelligence and to increase the use of social-emotional learning in school and in daily life. Students can be encouraged to share their opinions, to grow in awareness of their own emotional reactions and to notice the posture and facial expressions of others. These skills can be incorporated into any subject, such as considering how chemicals react to each other in science and questioning the actions and behaviors of people in history.

How Positive Action Can Help

Positive Action is a social-emotional program that can help stimulate interest in learning and improve behavior. It’s a multi-purpose model that has benefits for both students and teachers in several areas including:

  • Physical – Improved self-awareness can lead to better physical health, including lower body mass index.
  • Emotional – Better social emotional skills can help to reduce depression.
  • Intellectual – Students have an increased desire to learn, leading to improved academic performance.
  • Social – Students learn to interact with others in meaningful and positive ways, which can lead to a reduction in bullying

The philosophy behind Positive Action teaches students that positive actions lead to positive feelings about themselves. Positive Action is a program designed by a teacher for teachers. It simplifies the process of implementing emotional intelligence and social intelligence with prepared lessons that include a comprehensive manual, booklets, activity sheets, and more. Focusing on social and emotional intelligence first thing in the morning provides concepts that can be reinforced throughout the day.

When students feel good about themselves, there are fewer disruptive behaviors such as violence, alcohol, or substance abuse. Students have better relationships with each other and can carry the concepts of social and emotional intelligence into their adult lives, leading to a better chance of success and happiness. Contact us today and find out how Positive Action can revolutionize the learning environment for your students.