In March 2016, the World Economic Forum (WEF) produced a detailed report on the important of social and emotional learning (SEL) for twenty-first-century students, which can be read in full here: http://www3.weforum.org/docs/WEF_New_Vision_for_Education.pdf
The WEF argues that “social and emotional proficiency will equip students to succeed in the swiftly evolving digital economy”. The report also cites a study that maintains “65% of children entering grade school will ultimately work in jobs that don’t exist today”, which places major importance on developing skillsets that allow children to be adaptable, creative, and excellent interpersonal communicators.
I find this to be directly in line with the philosophy of the “whole child” promoted by certified IB schools like St. Jude’s Academy. It represents the holistic teaching method we apply, which involves supporting group work and collaboration in the classroom, as well as team work during extracurricular activities. We recognize the importance of supporting all aspects of our students’ development, all to the benefit of academic excellence and future personal success.
As cited by the WEF, in the 1960s the Perry Preschool Study embarked on an education study which followed its child participants until the age of 40. The experiment involved a control group of students taught using traditional methods, compared to one other group where the children were taught using an SEL-based curriculum. At the end of the study, they discovered that the students who had been educated by the curriculum that encouraged the development of SEL skills reported higher income earnings than their counterparts and were less likely to have been involved in criminal activities [source: HighScope, “Lifetime Effects: The HighScope Perry Preschool Study Through Age 40”, 2005, http://www.highscope.org/content.asp?contentid=219 ] As you can see, promoting SEL skills in the classroom, our “whole child” holistic teaching approach, has beneficial results not just limited to academic and workplace success; encouraging a child’s social and emotional development also leads to the creation of responsible and civic-minded citizens.
I highly recommend checking out both reports in full for yourself! 🙂