Last week I participated in the 7th ENSEC (European Network for Social and Emotional Competence) Conference on “Well-being and Social, Emotional Development”. It was organised this year by ELTE University, Faculty of Education and Psychology. Some important names in the field of education, social and emotional development of children and youth took part in the conference. Here are some of the highlights:
Prof. Maurice Elias from Rutgers University, co-director of The Academy for Social-Emotional Learning in Schools, spoke about the fast changing world we live in and the importance of educating our children to a high academic standard, but also to develop the social and emotional competencies that will enable them to adapt and thrive in the future.
Prof. Ilaria Grazzani from the University of Milano, lectured about the impact of intervention programmes on young children’s development.
Emeritus Prof. Helen Cowie from the University of Surrey, had an impressive paper on the importance of peer support and how to improve the process of child participation inside schools.
Other key ideas were: the importance of promoting core values within a school to help students connect to the principals and values, in order to set the guidelines for their future values in life; peer mentoring as a way to diminish bullying and empower students; the powerful impact that the development of social and emotional competencies can have on the global well-being of our children and upon families as well. I am proud to say that BISB is already implementing these strategies and guidelines.