JMSG supports girls in developing their emotional intelligence and social skills by providing a weekly Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) class. The goal of SEL is to provide an atmosphere of trust within the community of girls, in which they can learn essential and important life skills. In SEL, a girl can give voice to her feelings in a productive and safe way, and hear those feelings acknowledged by her peers and teachers. SEL encourages girls to explore their own choices, develop a strong sense of self, recognize similarities, and respect differences. SEL is team-taught by the JMSG school counselor and a JMSG teacher. Typical topics include communication, conflict resolution, relationships, diversity, physical and mental health, and human sexuality.
At JMSG, part of our SEL curriculum includes a comprehensive sexual education curriculum that is based on SEICUS: The Sexual Education Information Council of the United States. This national organization was formed by experts in the field: physicians, educators, therapists, and parents who came together and identified what students need to know at this particular stage in their development. In 7th grade, in addition to the unit on human sexuality, girls also learn about gender: definitions of gender, other forms of identity, and messages in the popular media about gender. In 8th grade, there is an additional unit that aims to educate girls about what a drug is, as well as the short and long term effects of drugs on the body. As part of JMSG’s Mission, we believe it is critical to empower girls with accurate information so that they can make informed choices as they move forward in their lives.
The class structure includes reading and discussion, role plays and skits, videos, guest speakers, and hands-on activities. While topics may be similar in each grade, the SEL curriculum uses developmentally age-appropriate material including resources from Girls Leadership Institute (GLI), The Girls' Middle School (GMS), The Nueva School, and the Institute for Social and Emotional Learning.
OUTCOMES After 3 years of SEL, girls will develop increased:
- Self Awareness
- Self Management
- Social Awareness
- Relationship Skills
- Responsible Decision Making