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Bet You Didn’t Know Social Emotional Learning (SEL) Has Academic Benefits

Updated: Aug 12, 2023

Skills like breathwork and community building are foundational to whole child growth

In the classroom, a kindergarten boy interacts with a classmate.

Social emotional learning (SEL) is an educational approach that focuses on teaching students social and emotional skills, such as self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, relationship skills, and responsible decision-making.


Maleku's Gift introduces breathwork, a lifelong skill, to children as a way to regulate their emotions, a very important part of social emotional learning.


There are several benefits of SEL on academic growth:

  1. Improved academic performance: Students who participate in SEL programs tend to have higher academic achievement, including better grades and test scores, compared to those who do not. (Durlak, et al, 2022)

  2. Increased engagement and motivation: SEL programs can help students develop a sense of belonging and purpose, which can lead to increased engagement and motivation in the classroom. (Zins, 2004; Dobia, 2019)

  3. Enhanced problem-solving skills: SEL programs teach students skills such as critical thinking, collaboration, and problem-solving, which can help them succeed academically and in their future careers. (Arslan, 2016; Durlak 2022)

  4. Better behavior and reduced disciplinary problems: Students who participate in SEL programs tend to have fewer disciplinary problems and improved behavior in the classroom, which can lead to a more positive learning environment for all students. (DePaoli, 2017)

  5. Improved mental health and well-being: SEL programs can help students develop resilience and coping skills, which can lead to improved mental health and well-being. This, in turn, can lead to better academic performance and success. (Greenburg, 2017)


Overall, incorporating SEL into the academic setting can have a positive impact on student academic growth, as well as their social and emotional development.


By teaching students these important skills, they are better equipped to succeed in school and in life. Fostering the development of social emotional skills positively impacts students and the classroom atmosphere.


Helping our children grow academically is important, and in this particular moment, encouraging them to engage in community, create relationships and work together is paramount to their development.



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