P.E.A.C.E. Blog
  • Neomi Fletcher

Closing the Gap

Updated: Jul 30, 2021

When examining the quality of public education here in the United States, at every level we can find assessments identifying the lack of readiness of students entering the classroom. From ensuring that all children have an early “Head Start” to improving the critical-thinking and writing skills of entering college students, there is a great need for partnership between households and classrooms to ensure that students are able to manage the demands of formal education.

I have witnessed the increased attention on early childhood education prompting most parents to heavily invest in the literary development of their children. However, in the midst of developing literacy, the social-emotional skills of many young children receive little attention. Sometimes the social-emotional immaturity is created by an environment that provides too much comfort for the child. Sometimes it is caused by a lack of emotional connection between the child and the parent. Other times it is formed by a tragic event. At times the emotions are left unattended to because of abuse or neglect. And yet there are some situations where it emerges simply from a lack of awareness of how critical social-emotional development is to everyone’s existence.

Because this P.E.A.C.E. journey is prompted by an invitation to share ourselves with our children, we must begin the examination of social-emotional health with ourselves. How often do we permit ourselves to engage in healthy social activities? When do we make time to feel the impact of the activities consuming our time? How well do we express our true emotions? To what degree are our social and emotional needs met?

As we continue to increase our awareness of our own social-emotional health, we will be able to observe our children’s interactions and recognize how we can guide them in this regard. Not only do we want to ensure that they are able to process “No” in a healthy manner, we want to teach them different techniques for navigating conflict. Strong development in these areas will influence the quality of their relationships with others, their confidence interacting with the world around them and their appreciation for their upbringing for many years to come. As a community committed to P.E.A.C.E., let us commit to investing in the social and emotional health of our young people so that classroom leaders can spend less time managing their classroom and more time feeding the curiosity of their students.

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