According to psychologist Stephanie Jones and her research team at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, Social Emotional Learning (SEL) equips students with developmentally appropriate fundamental cognitive regulation, emotional, and interpersonal skills. These skills enhance learning, encourage self awareness, and strengthen relationships, leading to success in school, in the community, and in life.
In grades 6-8 SEL classes are integrated into the physical education program, joining SEL instruction with the cognitive, affective, and psychomotor skills development, in order to address the health and wellness of the whole child.
Developmentally relevant sample lessons and practice include conflict resolution, self-awareness, empathy, problem solving, inclusivity, assertiveness, cooperation, self-advocacy, mindful practice, and relaxation techniques.
Middle School Advisory provides students with a faculty mentor and contact person who serves as the primary liaison between school and home. Advisors have roughly 12 advisees with whom they meet every day during a 30-minute advisory time period. This is a time for a study period three to four days a week under the guidance of a teacher. It is also a time to build friendships and group spirit, to discuss important topics and timely issues, to build community responsibility in the Middle School, and to participate in community service. Each Friday, the entire Middle School gathers for a meeting led by Student Council members.