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Social-Emotional Learning

Walt Disney Kinder student Walt Disney kinder 

Walt Disney Kinder student Walt Disney Kinder

At Penn-Harris-Madison, we want to equip our students with the skills they need for success now and in the future. One way we do this is through Social-Emotional Learning (SEL) lessons. Penn-Harris-Madison has created SEL lessons for our students based on Indiana Department of Education SEL standards/learning competencies in order to intentionally teach students vital SEL competencies to equip them for success both now and in the future. SEL is the  knowledge and skills essential for wellbeing as well as personal and professional success. It includes teaching, modeling, practicing, and reinforcing these skills (Indiana Department of Education). 


On Monday, August 2 and Tuesday, August 3, 2021, P-H-M Administration held three Parent Information Sessions and Workshops on Social Emotional Learning & Diversity Equity Inclusion Student Lessons. Below is more information to assist families who were unable to attend or who are looking for more information:


In order to explicitly teach SEL skills as well as cover Employability Skills, both of which are needed for college and career success, SEL lessons are taught on a weekly basis (with some expectations due to school schedules) by the teacher in the classroom setting, SEL lessons are geared for all students at the Tier 1 level, which means it is core instruction and for all students, Not only do the lessons explicitly teach the SEL skills, it is also used as a time to build relationships, positive community, and reinforce a sense of belonging, all of which are important for a positive learning environment.


The Indiana Department of Education has SEL competencies/main skills and standards that were released in January of 2019. We use the IDOE’s language to align with what the state has shared for teaching and learning. The way these skills are taught differs across the age levels. Below, please find a list of the seven SEL Competencies from the Indiana Department of Education:

  • Insight:  The ability to know your emotions and how they affect your thoughts and actions (important for self-confidence, self-esteem, empathy, and recognizing one’s strengths and areas of growth). 
  • Regulation:  The ability to recognize and manage one’s emotions (builds self-control, self-discipline, and impulse control).
  • Connection:  The ability to have strong social awareness, giving students the ability to take the perspectives of others and empathize with people of diverse backgrounds and cultures.
  • Collaboration:  The ability to work well with others (builds positive communication and conflict management skills).
  • Critical Thinking:  The ability to make constructive choices and understand metacognitive strategies to enhance learning (builds responsible decision making, analytical and critical inquiry skills, which are necessary to approach learning from an innovative, creative, multicultural, and ethical lens).
  • Sensory-Motor Integration:  When one is aware of their body and sensations in order to manage transitions, change routines, increase alertness for learning and improve regulation.
  • Mindset:  The ability to demonstrate cognitive flexibility and a willingness to learn, which is critical for perseverance, adaptability, self-discovery, resilience and giving/receiving constructive feedback.


SEL is integrated throughout the day; however, there is time for explicit instruction via SEL lessons that are offered on a weekly basis (with a few exceptions based on the school calendar). 


At the elementary level, the lessons are taught based on the teacher’s schedule. At the middle school level, the lessons are taught one day a week during Advisory, which occurs the first 30 minutes of the day. At the high school level, the lessons are taught on the first Gold Day of the week during the 3rd block, which is slightly longer than the other blocks due to the lunch schedule.


For the 2021-2022 school year the lessons will be released on the website in increments to roughly align with the grading quarters. If you would like to see the student SEL lessons, please click the link below to find a list of the dates, topic overview, and links to the slide decks that have been prepared for students to view. 


After review of the SEL Lessons, if parents/guardians choose to have their student opt out of the SEL Lessons, they will need to contact their building principal. Parents may opt out of SEL by the quarter or for the school year. It is important to note that opting out lesson by lesson is not an option at this time. If a family determines that their student will opt out of the lessons, the school will keep track of this information and the student will instead read a book. Each school will manage students who may opt out based on needs and what works best for that school. 


2021-2022 P-H-M Social Emotional Learning Student Lessons


P-H-M is committed to helping students reach their fullest potential, which includes the whole-child! Please find below various valuable parent resources to help you in supporting your child …



P-H-M’s three middle schools and Penn High School each have trained, expert counselors in place at each building as resources to help students. Click below to access the contact information for your school’s Counseling Office