Teaching to the whole student
Educators know the importance of fostering students’ social-emotional learning (SEL) alongside their regular academic instruction. Whether you’re teaching in person, remotely or a hybrid model, SEL is necessary to develop students’ math confidence and love of learning. DreamBox is here to both support your math instruction, and help you integrate SEL in your classroom to build students’ math confidence!
How does SEL promote math confidence?
- According to CASEL, SEL is "the process through which all young people and adults acquire and apply the knowledge, skills, and attitudes to develop healthy identities, manage emotions and achieve personal and collective goals, feel and show empathy for others, establish and maintain supportive relationships, and make responsible and caring decisions." (Source: CASEL https://casel.org/fundamentals-of-sel/)
- The primary goal of SEL is to improve student attitudes and beliefs about self, others and school. A Stanford University study found that children with a positive mindset about math performed better in the subject, which is important when we think about fostering math confidence in classrooms.
How to pair SEL + DreamBox in your classroom:
Foster a growth mindset: DreamBox knows grit and perseverance are essential to learning new concepts and having a growth mindset. Grit requires students to have the social-emotional tools and self-management skills to persevere through challenges. When students work in DreamBox, they earn badges for perseverance and persistence, which builds intrinsic motivation. As an educator, it’s important to help students understand that learning new concepts involves making and embracing mistakes. Here are ways to support their growth mindset:
- Demonstrate making mistakes and using positive self-talk.
- Empower children to advocate for themselves when they need help problem-solving.
- Provide opportunities for students to reflect on their learning.
- Send personalized messages to students on DreamBox that encourage motivation and productive struggle.
- Celebrate students’ achievements!
Teach kids to monitor their progress: Empowering students to set goals and monitor their progress helps them build self-discipline and self-esteem. Use DreamBox to help students with goal setting and progress monitoring.
- Challenge students to set goals both in the short term – I’ll complete [x] DreamBox lessons this week – and long term – I’ll master [x] math concepts this quarter. Plus, goal setting is a great tool to practice their positive self-talk.
- Students can monitor their own progress on DreamBox ensuring they’re active in their goal setting. They also can select which topics and lessons to work on, so they’re invested and engaged.
Hold regular check-ins: Intentionally checking in with students fosters deeper connections and provides more opportunities for students to be heard. DreamBox allows you to send a message to your whole class or to individual students, which is useful for scheduling check-ins, whether they’re remote or in person.
- Class meetings are a powerful way to build classroom community. Take time to celebrate what works in your classroom, address what needs adjusting and encourage kids to share their opinions.
- Individual check-ins offer chances to connect with students. These check-ins may have an academic focus to provide targeted support and discuss math goals. Other times, these check-ins may have a social-emotional focus to encourage students to share how they’re feeling.