Incite/Insight Winter 2018 Incite Insight Winter 2018 - Page 12

11 I n c i t e /I ns i ght W i n te r 201 8 Kindness is the Cure W R I T T EN BY MARGARET BOERSMA A grade three student says, “You mean we can be friends again after we make a mistake?” Students learn the “Make it Right Formula” and ah-ha! moments are visible in their eyes. The thrill of those ah- ha! moments gives me great joy! And it doesn’t matter if it happens with children or adults; the thrill is the same. Principals often want me to address the theme of bullying when I come into a school. I have come to realize that every school struggles with students who need lessons in how to deal with their feelings. In fact, social/emotional learning is a popular term in education now, and applying social and emotional intelligence has become more important than academic and technical competence to be “job ready.” According to the Carnegie Institute of Technology, “85% of your success is due to your personality and ability to communicate, negotiate, and lead. Shockingly, only 15% is due to technical skills.” A Project with a Social/ emotional Learning Focus Recently, I worked with a school creating an experiential, cross- curricular unit addressing negative student behavior. The purpose was to make students aware of the impact of their inappropriate behavior. But I like to be pro-active. Rather than accepting mediocrity and teaching what was appropriate and inappropriate behavior, the team of teachers and I decided to reach for a more positive goal and outcome. We created a unit called, “Be Kind.” The consulting project included four parts and provided a scaffolded approach. There were two classes and four teachers participating. 1. First, the teachers participated in a professional development