- Young people are diverse in their learning styles and needs. It is essential to assess individual learning styles and be flexible in time management to allow for meeting these different needs. Howard Gardner's "Multiple Intelligences" (PDF) provides a framework.
- Program activities are more engaging if they are relevant to young people. Identifying and building on young people's individual assets (PDF) and sparks are key strategies.
- Use teaching techniques that build on young people's current knowledge and skills, such as scaffolding (PDF). Provide positive and constructive feedback.
- Young people need to be active partners in learning. Increase their input and voice through planning and reflection activities. Create meaningful responsibilities and roles for genuine youth engagement throughout programming. Encourage and facilitate young people's shared decision-making through consensus/action planning (PDF).
- Use active learning strategies such as hands-on, experiential (PDF), and project-based activities.
- Help young people learn to use critical thinking and responsible decision making skills. Use active listening skills (PDF) with youth.
- Facilitate peer learning and teaching -- collaborative learning (PDF).
Edutopia: How to Teach Math as a Social Activity
In this video, a master math teacher in Anchorage, Alaska establishes a cooperative-learning environment in an upper-elementary classroom. The video demonstrates the principles at work in social learning strategies.
Video (9 minutes)
Edutopia: How to Keep Kids Engaged in Class
When students let their minds drift, they're losing valuable learning time. On this web page, Edutopia shares ten smart ways to increase student engagement.
Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL)
CASEL promotes evidence-based social and emotional learning strategies and programs primarily in school settings. The website contains information about current research, materials for learning activities, and new initiatives.
University of Minnesota's Center for Youth Development: Social and Emotional Learning
This website contains research articles, recorded presentations, and issue briefs by Weissberg, Durlak, and others who have pioneered SEL.
Youth Development Insight: Essential Ingredients of Social and Emotional Learning
Kate Walker, University of Minnesota Associate Extension Professor, discusses essential elements of SEL in this blog post.
TEAL Center (Teaching Excellence in Adult Literacy): Student Centered Learning
Although it refers to adult literacy programs, this fact sheet provides a thorough description and resources relevant to the principles of student-centered learning.
Parent Toolkit: Social and Emotional Development
This NBC News "Education Nation" offers information for parents tailored to the child's age.