Teachers have always known that social-emotional skills are important for academic achievement, well-being, and more. But as teaching moved out of classrooms last year, social-emotional learning (SEL) became even more critical to maximize student success and minimize the negative impacts of the pandemic. In fact, recent research conducted by YouGov and Microsoft revealed that, 58 percent of 1,500 K-12 teachers surveyed in the US, UK, and India identified SEL as one of their top priorities for 2021, up from 47 percent in 2020.
Technology can help with SEL by empowering collaborative online environments, providing analytics and feedback tools, like Education Insights and Reflect in Microsoft Teams, and integrating inclusive learning tools and immersive experiences. To address the increased importance of SEL, Microsoft partners have created new solutions and updated some existing ones with features to support teachers and students. Wherever your students are learning, low-cost and free apps from partners can help you continue supporting your students’ well-being with the tools they need to be creative, confident, and optimistic learners.
Here are some of our partner solutions for promoting SEL, grouped by the learning category that they best support: creativity, engagement, safety, and skill building:
|Students love building visual stories using augmented reality that can help them explore, reflect on, and explain topics such as self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, relationship skills, and responsible decision making. Ready-made curriculum and rubrics utilize the higher levels of Bloom's taxonomy (create, evaluate, analyze, and apply), letting teachers unleash student creativity to raise awareness and improve behavior.|
|Buncee helps educators create engaging, multimedia SEL resources and activities from scratch or from a library of templates. Students can complete these activities and express themselves with a variety of media options including emojis, stickers and animations, video, audio, drawing, and more. Fully integrated with Microsoft Teams, Word, OneNote, and Immersive Reader, Buncee lets students decide how they would like to communicate, empowering them to develop and use their voice, and have ownership of their work.|
|Support the well-being of your students and help them develop critical future-ready skills with Canva’s ready-made SEL activities, which can be easily shared to Microsoft Teams. You can also choose from a variety of templates to decorate and customize your Microsoft Teams backgrounds and Teams tiles for different subjects and grade levels.|
Gaggle Safety Management watches for students’ use of words or phrases in Microsoft 365 and Microsoft Teams that could indicate harmful behavior. If a match is discovered, a team of human safety experts evaluates the content to determine whether it poses a credible threat—and if so, how serious.
By utilizing a student safety platform within Microsoft 365 and Teams environments, educators can identify struggling students to create a strong support system and equip them with the SEL skills they need to succeed.
|Lightspeed Alert™ and Lightspeed Classroom Management™ integrate with Microsoft Teams to empower district leaders and educators with the visibility, actionable insights, and tools to help ensure student safety and engagement during remote and hybrid learning. Lightspeed Alert actively scans for and alerts about early-warning signs of concerning student behavior anywhere students engage online, including Microsoft 365 and Teams. Real-time alerts are sent directly to district personnel, 24/7/365 for human review, and escalation processes of imminent threats to student safety from Lightspeed Alert add a critical component in school districts’ wellness programs and student safety plans.|
Senso.cloud supports student well-being in and out of the classroom by monitoring student safety and providing effective IT support regardless of a device’s geographic location. Senso complements existing school initiatives to help monitor and report online issues. Armed with this information, schools can effectively intervene to improve social and emotional approaches that empower young people to become agents of change.
|Nearpod's Social & Emotional Learning lesson collection is a K-12 solution built from CASEL's leading framework and created in partnership with Calm and Common Sense Education. It helps students build positive, secure, and empowering school climates. Educators, counselors, and administrators can embed SEL instruction into any setting to provide explicit instruction of the skills students need for school and beyond. Using Nearpod's signature interactive platform, teachers can hear questions from every student throughout lessons to elevate student voice. Through scenario-based critical thinking opportunities, students will build key skills that contribute to whole child well-being, discuss and reflect on SEL skills, and complete other skill building activities. Nearpod's SEL will empower students with lifelong learning strategies and growth mindset practices to promote success in school and beyond.|
|Pear Deck Social Emotional Learning Templates help students practice SEL skills by incorporating questions that promote self-awareness into regular lessons. Supported by learning science, Pear Deck leverages strategies that are proven to make a positive impact on student learning for any subject area and across all grade levels.|
Silas research-based SEL Curriculum and Simulation Software serves special education, general education, and transition-aged students. With breakthrough technology including distance learning multiplayer capabilities modeling social skills using avatars and real-time animation, Silas incorporates CASEL’s 5 Social Competencies, meets state and federal SEL mandates, and aligns with MTSS Framework.
To learn more about supporting students with SEL, check out Microsoft Education SEL tools, solutions, and curriculum. You can also take advantage of the on-demand webinar Teaching Happiness, Sway guides on SEL (in both English and Spanish), and a new training opportunity, “Creating classroom communities using social and emotional practices”— in the Microsoft Educator Center.