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Reading Apprenticeship Earns Top Honors in 2015 Social Emotional Learning Guide

WestEd’s Reading Apprenticeship was one of only nine programs in the nation to earn a spot on the “SELect” list in the just-released 2015 CASEL Guide: Effective Social and Emotional Learning Programs—Middle and High School Edition. Programs that qualified as “SELect” had to prove that their approach was both evidence-based and effective in achieving outcomes such as improved academics, improved attitudes, and reduced problem behavior. The aim of the Guide is to provide educators with information for selecting and implementing existing SEL programs in their schools and districts.

Social and emotional learning has always been a key component of the Reading Apprenticeship Framework, which emphasizes the need for teachers to create safe classrooms and positive communication – part of the Social and Personal Dimensions – in order for students to fully engage in deeper learning while developing the persistence and confidence they need to make sense of challenging texts. In a recent conversation with students in a Reading Apprenticeship history classroom in Pennsylvania, when asked how this classroom differed from others, one student replied, “What’s different in this [Reading Apprenticeship history class] is that the teacher establishes a relationship with each student. He makes us comfortable learning and questioning.” Students also reported a shift in their own behaviors and attitudes around learning. As another student expressed it, “I never talked much about school outside of school before. Now I can talk with my parents about current events, even teach them things!”

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