How can education help cultivate EQ among the young?

Do you remember when or how you learned to identify, manage, and recognize your emotions? For many adults, the answer is: No. More often than not, you stumbled your way through those baffling life moments on your own. As important as navigating our inner landscape is, it is not something that is explicitly taught in schools. However, according to a research conducted by the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence, EQ is proven to contribute more to workplace success than technical skills and even personality traits, and should therefore be considered as important as IQ in education.

There has been a growing effort in schools to offer programs that focus on social and emotional skills. Shattuck-St. Mary’s Forest City International School’s Early Childhood program prioritizes the social development of young students by providing them authentic social interactions and scenarios to learn problem solving, conflict resolution strategies, and compromising at a developmentally appropriate level. In the Lower School, the Morning Meeting time is available for the development of interpersonal skills, proactive prevention of bullying, and learning how to fill the emotional bucket of classmates in a positive manner. Students in high school are introduced to blended instruction that will enrich their school days with learning activities such as project-based learning and peer collaboration. These will enable students to effectively develop intrapersonal and interpersonal skills.

The physical and emotional development of adolescents is just as important in the process of cultivating EQ. While not every aspect of physical health affects EQ, Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence has also found that there are major overlaps between both entities. Students of Shattuck-St. Mary’s Forest City International School are taught to understand the importance of personal fitness and healthy choices. This will help them develop the proper skills and attitudes for positive interactions with others and personal confidence in their daily life as a student and member of the community. The school’s Physical Education teachers and counselors will also work together with advisors to support the physical and emotional growth of all their students.

Children need to know more than just how to read, write, and count to become successful adults equipped with the fundamental ability to persist in goal-oriented activities in the workplace. According to a study conducted by Reinders Research, the impact of arts education on students’ emotional intelligence is bigger than expected. Shattuck-St. Mary’s Forest City International School places emphasis on the students’ creative side by offering comprehensive arts education to all their students, with a cherry on top: weCreate, a unique program that stresses creativity, collaboration, and innovation through a series of activities that students are encouraged to take part in.

Succinctly, in today’s day and age, it has become imperative for students to be equipped with soft skills that encourage the development of high-level emotional intelligence. This not only makes them irreplaceable by machines but will ensure that they have no problem navigating the social complexities of workplace in an ever-changing world.