Social Emotional Learning Meets Technology Education

Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) and Technology Education?  Traditionally these are not two subjects that we would lump together.  However, as SEL is increasingly becoming mandatory curriculum in schools, educators must determine where to fit SEL in. 

Here are EdGate, SEL has weaved its way into our daily vernacular.  Our team of standards alignment subject matter experts (SMEs) is as comfortable talking about the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL) standards as they are talking about NGSS standards.  And in addition to CASEL, states continue to publish their own SEL standards.  So yes, SEL is happening.

Separately, students are being immersed into Technology Education.  They are learning how to code. They are learning about AR and VR.  They are being immersed into technology that brings learning to life.  But could SEL and Technology Education actually be combined?  Industry professional say yes.

“In many cases people think that the SEL and Technology Education are at odds with each other,” says Christopher Dudick, CEO of SiLAS, a gamified learning company that enables educators to help students build social skills.  “After all, how can someone be social if they are on a computer or a phone?  But without a doubt technology is here to stay and it is extremely engaging to students.  Our belief is that if you build the right technology-based platform and combine it with SEL curriculum in a positive way it can be a wonderful solution.”

In a nutshell, using the SiLAS program, students write a script that describes how they might handle a situation more effectively, e.g. cooperating with a classmate.  The students then select avatars that represent them, the proper background, then create and record a real time animated video that models a more constructive interaction. All of this is achieved using video-game controllers and headset microphones, resembling a student’s favorite video game.

Headsets?  X-Box controllers?  How the classroom has changed! 

To access the full article and learn about additional SEL + Technology Ed projects, please go to MDR Education site here.   

By: Gina Faulk
General Manager