Readin’, Writin’, and Regulatin’ Emotions

Two years ago, P.S. 60 Alice Austen School, on Staten Island, began to integrate Social-Emotional Learning, which teaches kids techniques to identify and regulate their emotions, into its academic programs. “Even before Covid, I noticed these kids were in a crisis,” the principal, Donna Bonanno, explained as she walked past a poster that read “How do you feel about what you learned today?”

After the pandemic began, the city placed an emphasis on SEL. It is now part of the curriculum in almost a thousand schools. Meanwhile, Mayor Eric Adams has underscored the importance of mindfulness in the classroom; all public-school students, he has said, should start their day with twenty minutes of meditation.

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