NEWS FROM THE CENTER FRIDAY DIGEST - December 2, 2022 - How Should Christian Parents and Teachers Help Children Grow in Virtue?
Two years of lockdown and quarantine disruptions to most American children’s learning led to historic declines in student achievement in 2022. Test scores are easier to measure than other, possibly more important, ways lockdowns harmed children. Teachers are reporting that traits such as emotional resilience, relationship skills and self-control also have taken a serious hit.
Children are more anxious, less secure and more disorganized and unruly post-lockdown, according to teachers and mental health surveys. So teachers, counselors, principals and other school leaders are urgently seeking ways to help. One popular strategy, especially in secular schooling, is called “social and emotional learning,” or SEL. (It’s also sometimes called “socioemotional learning.”)
The rise of SEL
SEL is billed as a way to help children develop important life skills such as relating to others, cooperating, managing their emotions and communicating. According to the Collaborative for Academic, Social and Emotional Learning (CASEL), a leading SEL advocacy organization, so far 27 states require public schools to teach SEL objectives in K–12, and all 50 states require this of public preschool programs.
Nobody seriously objects to the idea of teaching children patience and kindness. But many social-emotional learning programs are not effective, and many are openly anti-Christian. Many school staff are not aware of this when they welcome such programs into their schools.
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Joy Pullmann is the executive editor of The Federalist. This article was originally published in and is reprinted here with permission of The Lutheran Witness.
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“Unlike Christmas ornaments, each baby is a unique life never to be replicated in all of history. Each life brutally snuffed out by abortion will leave the world a lesser place for it.” --Bradley Mattes, president of Life Issues Institute, Lutherans for Life
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