Social Skills

Wawaloam is a PBIS school and we offer a social skills program for our entire Kindergarten class as we recognize the importance of well developed social competence and it's connection to academic and life long success.  We don't assume that all children come to school with the same set of academic or social skills and so we teach them. Utilizing music and puppets, we use the "Second Step" program to teach the following critical skills:

Skills for Learning:
Students gain skills to help themselves learn, including how to focus their attention, listen carefully, use self-talk to stay on task and be assertive when asking for help.

Empathy:
Students learn to identify and understand their own and others' feelings. Students also learn how to take another's perspective and how to show compassion.

Emotion Management:
nt:Students learn specific skills for calming down when experiencing strong feelings, such as anger, anxiety or excitement.

Problem Solving: 
Students learn a process for solving problems with others in a positive way.

 Each unit in the "Second Step" program includes the goals of the unit and how the lessons are designed to achieve them. The lessons are verbal, visual, kinesthetic and musical to engage every learner style. Examples are often acted out with puppets which engage and enthrall the students. 

The following pictures are "Puppy" and "Snail", our teaching puppets.







These same social skills are offered to identified students school wide in small groups through RTI to ensure that all students have the opportunity to enhance their social competence.  



See the Home page for the most recent videos of the students singing the songs they have learned. 


Social Emotional Development

As children enter the school age years, they begin to show signs of budding independence.  Parents and caregivers continue to be the most important  people in their child's life, but relationships with their peers becomes increasingly important.  It may be the first time that parents don't have daily contact with the adult caring for their child. One significant characteristic of this phase of development is a child's capacity to control their urges and conform to an appropriate standard of behavior without direct supervision. Another characteristic is the appearance of a "best friend", which is a universal feature of the school-age years. Together these characteristics enable the child to develop Self-regulation.

Milestones

5- to 6-year-olds

-Are willing to play cooperatively, take turns and share
-Show jealously toward siblings
-Understand their own feelings
-Understand the consequences of their actions
-Enjoy playing alone but prefer to play with peers
-Can dress themselves
-Are able to use words to express feelings
-Show empathy and offer to help when they see another in distress

7- to 8-year-olds

-Show a competitive spirit when playing games
-Befriend children of the opposite sex
-Form a sense of humor and enjoy telling jokes
-Can distinguish between fact and fantasy
-Are able to do pretend play with another child or group of children
-Help out with chores at home, such as clearing the table after a meal or cleaning up personal belongings

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