How to fund Emotional Intelligence curriculum in your School
When a school is looking to implement an Emotional Intelligence Curriculum, such as the “My Best Me” curriculum, one of their main concerns is funding. The good news is that the “My Best Me” curriculum meets federal funding eligibility standards and other state and local grant requirements.
We encourage you to use the following resources to help fund Social-Emotional Learning in your school.
Title Funds:federal funding opportunities for EI (Emotional Intelligence Curriculum)
Title I, Part A—Improving Basic Programs Operated by Local Educational Agencies
Title I, Part D—Prevention and Intervention Programs for Children and Youth Who Are Neglected, Delinquent, or At-Risk
Title II, Part A—Supporting Effective Instruction (Teacher Training and Teacher Retention)
FundsNet – Database to search for grants sorted by state
Federal Grants – (Keyword- Social Emotional Learning) federal funding filtered by opportunity status, funding type, eligibility, category and agency.
Funding Exclusive to Oklahoma:
EIGO– allows individuals and businesses to get a state income tax credit to help offset the expense specifically for Hope Rising.EIGO is only in Oklahoma and so these benefits only apply to Oklahoma Schools and Oklahoma Income Tax payers.
Students deserve programs that will teach them social-emotional skills that will span beyond the classroom. Teachers deserve the tools and resources to make this process easy and effective.
At the epicenter of school shootings, lives have been forever changed and trauma has become part of those communities. The effects of these shootings can also be felt far beyond the epicenter. They have brought on a lot of stress and anxiety for American parents. It is no surprise that the stress and anxiety that adults feel are also felt by children.
It is important to realize that children are very much aware of current events AND most schools are having “active shooter drills”. This topic is highly visible to children and we need to help them manage their feelings around this topic.
How can you talk to children about school shootings?
Start the conversation: The hardest part is starting the conversation. You may feel the desire to avoid this topic but in reality, discussing school shootings can help children feel less anxious. Ask your child what they already know about school shootings then allow them to guide the conversation and ask questions.
Normalize the feelings: It is important to normalize the feelings they are having. It is completely normal for them to feel anxious, sad, and/or scared. Allow them to explore those feelings in a safe place.
Talk about safety: Let your child know that school shootings are actually very rare. Reiterate that schools have taken appropriate measures to help children stay safe. Without getting graphic, ask them what plans are in place to keep them safe at school. They may answer fire drills, active shooter drills, tornado drills, etc.
Connect with the community for support: Anxiety and fear can make children more reclusive and less sociable. Remind your children of the people within your community that helps keep them safe. Teachers, coaches, cross guard, police, camp counselors, etc. These are the people within the community that are there to keep them safe.
“Hope is the belief that tomorrow will be better than today and that you have the power to make it so.”
During times of high stress, anxiety, and/or adversity students may lack hope. Lack of hope can affect willpower which in turn can make it hard for children to self-regulate. The outcome can be explosive outbursts and impulsive actions.
Dr. Chan Hellman, Ph.D. has studied hope extensively and believes it is the key to social-emotional well-being. Hope is a way of thinking and CAN be taught.
What he has found to be the three key components to hope.
Identify Pathways: the ability to identify pathways toward goals (problem solve) and Find ways around obstacles.
Cultivate willpower: the ability to sustain motivation to continue on the pathway in order to achieve that set goal.
In increasing numbers, educators in classrooms nationwide are seeing more and more children exposed to adversity, stress, and trauma. The impact of this trauma on the learning environment is felt throughout the hallways of schools as students struggle with academic performance, disruptive behaviors, and emotional insecurity.
Hope is the answer for the students, classroom, district, and communities.
Get everyone together and write a list of things you all want to do over the summer, giving everyone a chance to communicate what they are most excited about. This is a great time to promote positive communication AND get everyone excited about what’s to come. Your summer list can be filled with things as simple as movie night, picnic in the park, drive-in movie, camping, making popsicles, etc.
2. Maintain routine
Schools are out and that may mean less structure to the day for some. That being said, it is important to keep a little routine and maintain a lite version of your school year routine. This can help make it easier to adapt to changes.
3. Balance activity and down time
For some, summertime can be filled with trips and summer camps BUT don’t feel the pressure to keep busy. Summer is a great time to slow down and enjoy the downtime.
4. Staying Connected
Staying connected is one of the most important parts of transitioning into summer. Children thrive in social interaction and being with friends. Before year’s end try to gather classmate contact information and try to make plans for the summer. You can coordinate a class outing mid-summer. Nurturing social interaction and connection will help your child thrive when they return to school.
How to stay connected over summer:
Make sure to collect contact information before school ends
It is no surprise that in recent years there has been increased attention on the mental health of our students. As schools prepare for another year, it is important to take note of how you can better help your students, families, and staff.
Why implement an Emotional Intelligence Curriculum in the classroom?
Emotional Intelligence promotes self-awareness, academic achievement, and positive behavior not only in the classroom but also out of the classroom. Many teachers have implemented some form of EI in the classroom in recent years.
93% of teachers believe EI has a place in the classroom and for good reason. EI helps students thrive but also helps create a more cohesive classroom environment through fewer disciplinary actions, increased academic performance, reduction in classroom disruption, and open communication.
Why use an EI curriculum such as “My Best Me”?
Implementing an EI curriculum like “My Best Me” ensures best practices for the best results. Not only that, a good curriculum comes with good teacher support which helps take the stress out of planning and execution. A curriculum takes the guesswork out.
How to choose the best curriculum for your school:
Consider the age: Many EI curriculums are written for a certain age group. For example, the “My Best Me” curriculum is written for students as young as preschool age, all the way up to high school. Other curricula may be written just for high school-age or elementary-age students.
Does it meet your budget constraints? Of course each curriculum has a cost attached to it and these costs must be taken into consideration when deciding which curriculum is best.
Does the curriculum come with support or training? It is important that teachers are supported when implementing new curriculum. Through training and teachers’ resources. “My Best Me” comes with not only teacher training but also provides teachers with everything they need to implement the lesson in their classroom.
Does the EI curriculum focus on what is pertinent to your school district and your families? Every EI program is unique and focuses on different topics. “My Best Me” for example focuses on Identity, Health, Community, Environment, and Economics.
Many educators and parents will agree that Emotional Intelligence is important and should be implemented in schools. One of the more common barriers to entry is cost. The cost associated with a formal Emotional Intelligence program such as “My Best Me” can be challenging. So let’s break down the cost vs. benefit.
Is Emotional Intelligence a wise financial investment?
Yes! Social Emotional Learning is a solid investment. A study from Columbia University found that an Emotional Intelligence program can have an average of 1:11 return on investment. Emotional Intelligence is not only an important investment for your students BUT also a good financial investment.
Leveraging federal funds for Emotional Intelligence
Emotional Intelligence may be a good investment but finding the funds to allocate to this investment can be tricky. The main source of funds for Emotional Intelligence is the Title IV-A block grant. This grant authorizes activity in three broad areas:
Providing students with a well rounded education (arts, STEM, computer sciences).
Support the safety and health of students (Emotional Intelligence, drug and violence prevention, physical education).
Supporting effective use of technology (devices to give access to technology and digital materials).
Students benefit a great deal from EI
We know that Emotional Intelligence improves self awareness, self management, social awareness, relationship skills, and responsible decision making. All of these skills help students throughout their academic journey and promote long term positive outcomes. This ultimately results in greater graduation rates.