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Strategies: Healthy Social and Emotional Development

The following strategy types have an impact on healthy social and emotional development. These include home- and school-based strategies to (click to expand):

Build resilience in youth...

especially those exposed to violence and other important risk factors. Resilience is both a developmental process and an outcome. It refers to the ability to positively adapt and respond to adverse circumstances. There are many ways to build resilience in youth. The Center for the Study of Social Policy provides numerous examples (Harper Browne, 2014).

Additional resources: American Psychological Association, Center on the Developing Child at Harvard University, Children’s Resilience Initiative

Increase problem-solving skills...

in children and youth. Problem-solving skills help children learn to work through conflict and other frustrating situations peacefully. This U.S. DOJ Juvenile Justice Bulletin describes the rationale and decades of research supporting one of many evidence-based interventions to teach non-violent problem-solving skills.

Additional resources: American Psychological Association

Increase pro-social behavior...

in children and youth. Pro-social behavior encompasses a variety of behaviors, such as sharing and volunteering, intended to help or benefit others. Kidron and Fleischman (2006)  explain the importance of supporting pro-social behavior in children and provide guidance to educators and parents.

Additional resources: Ohio Department of Education (school-based strategies and home-based strategies)

Enhance emotional regulation...

and executive function in children. Executive function is essential to a child’s ability to “focus, hold and work with information in mind, filter distractions, and switch gears.” (Center on the Developing Child at Harvard University, 2014) Activities to enhance emotional regulation and executive function can begin as early as six months and continue well into adolescence.

Additional resources: Center on the Developing Child at Harvard UniversityDiamond & Lee (2011)

Encourage secure caregiver- ...

child attachment. A secure caregiver-child attachment forms the basis of trust and relationship throughout an individual’s life. Attachment begins to form at birth, as an infant learns to expect her primary caregiver to respond consistently and sensitively when she is distressed. Nurse home visiting programs have emerged as a highly successful method for teaching caregivers of infants how to foster a secure attachment with their children. High quality child care is important, as well.

Resources: Center on the Social and Emotional Foundations for Learning at Vanderbilt UniversityOunce of Prevention Fund,  Zero to Three National Center for Infants, Toddlers, & FamiliesBenoit (2004)

ProgramStrength of EvidenceHomeSchoolCommunityIn NC?Cost
Strengthening FamiliesEvidence-informedXXXXVaries
PAX Good Behavior GameEvidence-informedXTell us
Positive ActionsEvidence-basedXTell us
Raising a Thinking ChildEvidence-basedXXTell us
The Incredible YearsEvidence-basedXXXX
Tools for Getting AlongEvidence-informedXTell us$30-50/manual
Promoting Alternative Thinking Strategies (PATHS)Evidence-basedXXTell usVaries depending on quantity and grade level ordered
FAST TrackEvidence-informedTell us
Tools of the MindEvidence-informedXTell usSee website

MORE PROGRAMS to facilitate Healthy Social and Emotional Development


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