Research is verifying what most educators have known for a long time. The social and emotional wellness of students bears a direct impact on their academic success or failure. As expectations rise on teaching staff to wear multiple hats beyond their core training and career objective as educators, we saw the need to provide skilled paraprofessionals on school campuses to aid and reinforce the work of increasing the social and emotional wellness of students.
To address these needs among younger adolescents, we developed the Social-Emotional Exploration Groups. SEE is a weekly group of approximately 8 students and is led by 2 skilled, trauma-informed mentor-coaches who are YIPA certified Youth Work Specialists and certified in Social and Health Services Safety and Violence Prevention.
These groups meet on campuses during the regular school day.
The purpose of SEE is to help 3rd-5th grade students understand and manage their feelings, and to grow in their abilities to navigate social relationships. Our model is based on interactive games, stories and activities that help students explore what they are experiencing inwardly in their emotions and outwardly in their social relationships with others.
Students receive EYS swag items and a participation reward at the end of the group process. An optional parent training night can be scheduled to help the parents of SEE students understand and support the process their child is going through and build the skills that will reinforce this exploration at home.