Understanding Social-Emotional Skills

October 27, 2022

Parents and schools are beginning to realize that there are factors other than academics that determine success in a child’s life. These nonacademic skills are what we like to call social-emotional skills. But what do the buzzwords really mean? We seem to know about them, but not much is understood. Here we will break down some conceptions (and misconceptions) regarding social-emotional skills.

What Are Social-Emotional Skills?

Social-emotional skills are life skills that help individuals, your child especially, to make responsible decisions, resolve conflicts, develop healthy relationships with friends and family, manage their emotions, and feel empathy. These skills are important for a child to thrive, which in turn can improve your child’s success in academic life as well as prevent behavioral issues from emerging.

Surprisingly, babies start developing these skills as soon as they are born and begin interacting with people! Some indications that your child is displaying these skills are:

  • Responds to social interactions with facial expressions such as smiling
  • Shows ways to cope with difficult situations
  • Shows care and concern for others

Role of Parents

Children are learning from imitating others and your child is learning from your examples. That is why it is important to set a good example. What you can do to foster your child’s social and emotional developments are:

  • Be a model
  • Encourage your child
  • Spend quality time together
  • Be a good listener
  • Play games
  • Be respectful

Social-Emotional Learning is Only about Feelings

This is a common misconception that many of us initially believe. Emotions and feelings are only one of the many parts of social and emotional learning. In fact, The Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL) defines competencies which are essential for a child’s social and emotional development, including self-awareness, self-management, responsible decision-making, relationship skills, and social awareness.


written by Shandy Lwieka,
Tutor Time Indonesia


Source: What Are Social-Emotional Skills? | Child Development Skills (pathways.org)

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