Social and Emotional Learning, known as SEL, is an integral part of education at Lab. SEL is essentially the process of developing social and emotional skills in the context of a safe, caring, well-managed, and engaging learning environment. It is the deliberate school-wide and classroom reinforcement of the following skills and attitudes:

Self Awareness

Recognizing one’s emotions and values as well as one’s strengths and limitations.

Self Management

Managing one’s emotions and behaviors to achieve one’s goals.

Social Awareness

Caring about and respecting others; demonstrating one’s understanding and empathy for others.

Relationship Skills

Forming positive relationships, working collaboratively and dealing effectively with conflict

Teachers utilize this model in the classroom by using teachable moments to help students develop decision-making skills. Lab teachers and staff understand that they are responsible for all students in the school and school community and will not ignore behaviors of which they disapprove. Underlying this approach is the recognition that students will care more about learning if they feel they are cared for as individuals. There is a commitment to a broad definition of intelligence, which, in addition to high academic expectations, is the development of social and emotional skills.

An important component of the success of SEL is a positive classroom environment. Teachers work in a multitude of ways to create this environment ranging from the enthusiasm they show for their subject to encouraging students not to be intimidated by challenging content or the abilities of other students. Further, teachers are encouraged to use their leverage in positive ways, reminding students that learning is a process that takes time but by the same token, expressing disappointment or concern when work is not completed.

The NYC Lab School is also proud to partner with the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence and their RULER Program.

In addition to Social Emotional Learning, the NYC Lab School is a firm believer of Carol Dweck’s Growth Mindset model.