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TransformEd Co-Hosts a Successful SEL Summit

By | 2017-11-14T13:59:35+00:00 November 14, 2017|

On October 25, 2017, TransformEd co-hosted Social-Emotional Learning (SEL): A Teaching, Learning, and Leadership Opportunity with the Center for the Collaborative Classroom (CCC). The summit, held in Westborough, Mass., brought together nearly 200 educators throughout the state to highlight the importance of teaching, leading, and learning about SEL.

Improvement Science and MESH

By | 2017-11-01T11:10:57+00:00 November 1, 2017|

Over the past six months, I’ve had the great pleasure of traveling to districts across the country to speak with and learn from our new school partners who are committed to integrating important Mindsets, Essential Skills, and Habits (MESH), such as growth mindset and social awareness, into their daily practice. At the start of most of these engagements, educators tend to ask me one question more than any other: “Where do we begin?”

Rubber Bracelets, Birthdays, and Wonder

By | 2017-10-16T01:02:37+00:00 October 13, 2017|

What does social emotional learning look like in the elementary school classroom? How do students develop the mindsets, essential skills and habits necessary for success in school, and in life? Social emotional learning is everywhere. It is all the time. It is invisible, yet you can see it everywhere you turn. And it is essential. Social emotional learning unfolded during the first 20 days of the school year for me and my 3rd graders in Wilmington, Delaware in many ways.

5 Ways to Stay Engaged with MESH

By | 2017-10-12T14:57:21+00:00 September 29, 2017|

Whether you’re a parent, teacher, or student, autumn is full of new classes, practices, rehearsals, and appointments. With these demands, it’s difficult to stay engaged and up-to-speed on anything, let alone developments in students’ Mindsets, Essential Skills, and Habits (MESH). But we know that you value MESH, and that your school is most likely working to build these skills. We also know that it can be time-consuming to track the latest resources and information about competencies that research shows matters to student life outcomes. TransformEd is here to help.

New Social Awareness Toolkit Released for Educators

By | 2017-10-10T11:16:35+00:00 February 3, 2017|

Transforming Education has launched a new free resource for educators: our toolkit on social awareness. Social awareness is the ability to take the perspective of and empathize with others from diverse backgrounds and cultures; to understand social and ethical norms for behavior; and to recognize family, school, and community resources and supports.[1] Like other TransformEd toolkits, the Social Awareness Toolkit is a 90-minute professional development session, designed for educators seeking research-based strategies to support students in developing this particular competency. Educators who download this free resource will have access to an editable version of the session materials so they can customize them as needed for their own context.

What skills are new graduates missing when they start their first jobs?

By | 2017-10-10T11:16:56+00:00 April 27, 2016|

As a talent development consultant, when contracted to develop "onboarding" or "new hire" programs for fresh-to-the-workforce hires, I'm most often asked to create learning experiences that will teach business communication, relationship management, conflict resolution, professionalism & etiquette, time management, research & analysis, listening skills, and solving problems as a team.

"They are intelligent, capable, and technically savvy," one client said of his new sales hires, "but they show up not knowing how to behave and engage professionally in the workplace. They have to be told not to curse when speaking to clients, that ripped jeans are inappropriate work attire, and that e-mails need to be written in complete sentences. "

Professional organizations and businesses alike are all lauding this new crop of employees as highly qualified, innovative, ambitious, and skilled; however, their shortcomings in soft skills are impeding their success in the workplace.

Let’s Not Let Perfect Be the Enemy of Good: Measurement, MESH, and Continuous Improvement

By | 2017-10-10T11:22:11+00:00 March 2, 2016|

We are excited to be featured in yesterday's article on social-emotional skills (or “MESH”) on the front page of the New York Times. It's great to see the recognition for this important cause, and we love hearing about teachers like Ms. Cooney who are proactively supporting students in building the skills they need to succeed within school and beyond. Teachers like Ms. Cooney make us even more proud of the work we’ve done so far to support the CORE Districts, which have incorporated social-emotional skills and school culture/climate into their school accountability and continuous improvement system. As with any systems change effort, this has given rise to many questions. We understand the concerns about how MESH measures should be used, and we take those concerns seriously. We also know that part of having a Growth Mindset is committing to putting in the effort, reflecting on what we’re learning, and continuously improving the approach over time. We believe MESH measures aren’t perfect…yet...

Organization in Education Matters: Network Improvement Communities (NIC) and Improvement Science

By | 2017-10-10T11:24:40+00:00 February 29, 2016|

Drawing from improvement science, the Network Improvement Community Model (NIC) is a relatively new approach that provides a framework for deep, networked problem solving.  For school and district leaders wanting to improve outcomes in a specific area, this model can serve an efficient way to organize participants.  Too often we waste funding, personnel, and other resources toward admirable goals but with a vague understanding of the complexities of the problem.  NICs hone in on a single, specific problem and concentrate the energies of all participants to resolve the problem in a cyclical process that creates immediate and actionable results...

What’s Next for Social-Emotional Learning in Massachusetts

By | 2017-10-10T11:34:10+00:00 February 16, 2016|

Each year, my organization looks at 25 key indicators of student progress in Massachusetts. From kindergarten enrollment to college graduation rates, the Rennie Center’s annual Condition of Education in the Commonwealth data report provides a snapshot of education in Massachusetts, tracking trends in student performance from year to year. Using this data, we are able to highlight areas in need of attention from policymakers...

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