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Highline Public Schools
15675 Ambaum Blvd. SW Burien,WA 98166

Office Hours:

Monday-Friday: 7:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Learning Focuses on Head and Heart

Learning Focuses on Head and Heart

How do we want our students to feel when they are at school? Safe. Respected. Engaged.

Wondering why we are even asking about feelings? There is good reason. 

More and more research shows that students learn best when their social and emotional needs are addressed. The Collaborative for Academic, Social and Emotional Learning found that students engaged in a well-implemented social-emotional learning (SEL) curriculum experienced academic gains of 11%

Katelyn Asare, a teacher in the VITAL credit recovery program, knows this from experience. In keeping with our promise to know every student by name, strength and need, Katelyn asks each of her students to write down their strengths and needs each fall. What students tell her is revealing.

“How much more productive could our learning time be if students learned to regulate their emotions, resolve conflicts more peacefully and advocate for their needs?" asks Katelyn.

Inspired by her students, Katelyn researched social-emotional curriculum for secondary students. She learned Singapore has national standards for social-emotional learning and dedicates an hour a week at all grade levels to this learning. In January, Katelyn will travel to Singapore to study social-emotional learning as a fellow in the Fulbright Distinguished Awards in Teaching program.

From January to June 2018, Katelyn will study Singapore’s social-emotional learning curriculum. She will conduct student and teacher interviews, observe classrooms and audit university courses. Katelyn will complete a qualitative study on social-emotional learning and develop mini-curriculum units, which she will bring back to her classroom and share with other Highline schools when she returns next year.

See what students say they need from teachers in order to be successful in school and after graduation.