- Socio-emotional learning in focus at UNESCO MGIEP workshop
Socio-emotional learning in focus at UNESCO MGIEP workshop
NEW DELHI, APRIL 24: Master teachers from Bhutan, India, South Africa and Sri Lanka deliberated on Socio-Emotional Learning (SEL) at the three-day workshop organized by UNESCO Mahatma Gandhi Institute of Education for Peace and sustainable development (MGIEP). SEL is a learning approach that, along with the regular syllabus, focuses on empathy, attention, cognitive flexibility and other aspects of the human experience.
Focusing on ‘Global citizenship,’ the workshop launched a digital pedagogy, inculcating aspects of SEL using storytelling, games and interactive engagement. “One of the most important findings of cognitive neuroscience in the last 20 years has been that in order to learn the brain has to be socially connected and emotionally engaged. Therefore, it becomes important to bring this into educational systems,” said Nandini Chatterjee, Senior National Programme Officer, UNESCO MGIEP.
The capacity building workshop held in New Delhi introduced the teachers from different countries to the online pedagogy named Libre. The curriculum, designed for the age group of 12 to 14 years, stands on the four pillars of empathy, mindfulness, compassion and critical inquiry. It addresses issues of global relevance such as migration, nationalism, citizenship rights, identities and violence. Libre familiarizes the teachers with SEL approach to learning through the Collective Human Intelligence (CHI) platform.
The main objective of the platform is to utilize SEL to foster pro-social behaviour and build better learner engagement in the classroom, leading to improved academic performance. The onus was also put on multicultural understanding to mould the global citizens of tomorrow. On the final day of the workshop, the teachers were asked to use, review and give feedback on the digital platform with suggestions for effective implementation.“I think this (Libre) should be introduced as early as possible. Teachers should be made aware of SELs and what the goals are so that they can start using it. Later, we can build a curriculum around it. But it needs to be implemented quickly without hesitation or waiting for policies,” opined Etienne Piennar, a master teacher from South Africa.