Cottle School Focuses on Social-Emotional Learning

As part of the district’s strategic plan goal on social-emotional learning, students at William E. Cottle School are learning and demonstrating self-awareness, social awareness, responsible decision-making, self-management and positive relationship skills for mental, social, and emotional well-being. This instruction is being infused in their weekly lessons, daily interactions and expectations.

For example, during the month of November, William E. Cottle School Guidance Counselor Ms. McKinley visited classrooms to deliver lessons on social skills. In a recent kindergarten class, students shared positive qualities about themselves and their teachers before playing a game of "positive hot potato" in which they practiced giving and receiving compliments with each other. Classroom lessons are an important element in Ms. McKinley's role helping students to build positive images, to develop interpersonal skills as well as to feel good about school. 

In addition, William E. Cottle School has also implemented the WEC Orange Bandana Award, an honor that will be given this year to special fifth-grade students who have distinguished themselves by voluntarily performing outstanding acts of kindness, by being willing to help fellow students or by taking a stand against behavior that makes others feel badly. Winners, nominated by their peers and their teachers, will be announced several times throughout the school year. 

These initiatives are part of a larger district-wide commitment to social-emotional learning. Leadership and school-based teams are engaged in The RULER Approach, through the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence.  This evidence-based approach prepares staff to provide turnkey training to their colleagues on the "skills and tools of emotional intelligence both among staff and in the classroom."