Get UNLIMITED PRINTABLES with our Premium Membership    

SEL & PBIS: Your Journey Starts Here!

February 3, 2021 by Christopher Olson

Hello ETTC Teaching Trailblazers!  I am thrilled to present another addition to our Vlog series: “Teaching Trailblazers with Chris from Education to the Core”.  The series will include interviews with a variety of professionals across multiple disciplines in our field of education.  In this episode, I have a conversation with an amazing leader in our field, Beth Baker.  We discuss Social Emotional Learning (SEL) and Positive Behavior Intervention and Supports (PBIS).  Throughout the conversation we were able to not only cover why it is important to build these activities into your daily routines but how to do it as well. Your journey to SEL and PBIS truly does start here!

Beth Baker is a leader and an amazing resource for Social Emotional Learning and Behavioral Disorders.  Her curriculum vitae speaks for itself; which includes co-author of The PBIS Team Handbook, educator (both in the states and abroad), behavioral coach, and consultant.  This dialogue includes a wealth of resources and tips.  You can even begin utilizing these concepts in your classroom tomorrow!

Social Emotional Learning (SEL)

SEL is the process through which all of us acquire and apply the knowledge and skills to:

  • identify emotions
  • manage emotions
  • show empathy
  • establish and maintain relationships
  • as well as make responsible and caring decisions. 

Research has shown that directly teaching and practicing SEL lessons lead to academic success, fewer behavioral concerns, positive relationships, and higher graduation rates.  

It is evident that Beth has a great understanding of classrooms and current teachers.  I loved how she spoke about how teachers may feel that SEL practices could be inferred as just “another thing on their plate”.  However, she acknowledges that SEL IS the plate!  She continues to discuss how important taking that 15-20 minutes of an SEL lesson in your classroom is worth the time because you may end up spending that 15-20 minutes dealing with student behaviors, redirecting students, and even consoling a disruptive student.  

A great resource to gain additional knowledge for SEL is

Where Can I Start? 

I always share that emotions are difficult to grasp at a young age because they are so abstract.  However, that doesn’t and shouldn’t stop us.  By laying a good foundation of identifying emotions and appropriate coping skills will allow the students to build on that as they grow.  For example, we as adults have our own coping skills (some may be healthier than others) to deal with difficult situations.  We learned them from somewhere, right?   

A great place to begin is to start the dialogue and address different emotions.  Create some scenarios and allow the students to talk them through.  How do they think that person is feeling, how would they feel in that situation, and appropriate ways to get through it. 25 Breathing Exercises to Calm and Focus Your Students is a great resource for you to begin incorporating some coping and mindful activities into your daily routine.  

Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS) 

Beth and I shift our focus of the conversation to a parallel road that aligns so well with Social Emotional Learning, which is PBIS.  It is important to note early on that PBIS is a framework that organizes your school and classroom.  It is looking at behavioral expectations, behaviors, and how to build your school community.  

Beth speaks so eloquently on how everybody needs to find and have their person.  Building positive relationships and trust is at the heart of everything we do as educators.  I believe we all want to build a positive and welcoming environment.  These environments allow students to feel safe and open to learning.  Another recent post in ETTC Teaching Trailblazers YouTube Series is a discussion with Enrique Bravo who discusses the importance of Building Relationships Through Team Building.  

Where Can I Start? 

If you are new to the PBIS world…welcome!   PBIS is all about setting expectations, practicing those expectations, and reinforcing those expectations!  By collaboratively creating expectations with your students, you are not only allowing them to have a voice but creating a higher chance of follow-through.  Once those expectations are set, it is time to start modeling!  Model how it looks and set time aside to allow your students to practice, practice and practice!  

Additional information on behavior management can be found in my behavioral series starting with What’s the Function of Behavior?

The PBIS Team Handbook is such a great resource!  It is a resource not only for a brand new PBIS team getting started but also for the already established team.  It provides information on how to get started, setting a good foundation, and building on skills for your PBIS Team, Classroom, and School Community.  

Are you a PBIS school? What are some of your classroom expectations?  Do you currently include SEL in your teaching practices and lessons? We would love to hear your answers to these questions and more in the comments below!  Please make sure to subscribe to the ETTC YouTube channel as well as like and share the video above!

Looking to Connect with Beth Baker?

Want to learn more about Beth Baker, SEL, or PBIS?  You can follow her on Twitter.    @PBIS_beth

The PBIS Coach, on Facebook, offers individuals to join a community to discuss PBIS and behavior.  Feel free to visit and follow her for additional information, strategies, and activities.

Do You Inspire and Empower?

Do you feel you can inspire and empower Teaching Trailblazers of Education to the Core?  If so, you could be interviewed for our YouTube series “Teaching Trailblazers with Chris from ETTC”! Click here for your chance to share with ETTC what you are most passionate about and begin to pave the way for a better future for our teachers, for our students, and for education. 

Written by: Christopher Olson

At Education to the Core, we exist to help our teachers build a stronger classroom as they connect with our community to find trusted, state-of-the-art resources designed by teachers for teachers. We aspire to be the world’s leading & most trusted community for educational resources for teachers. We improve the lives of every teacher and learner with the most comprehensive, reliable, and inclusive educational resources.

If you enjoyed what we have to offer at ETTC, be sure to join our email list, so you won’t miss a beat.