Social-Emotional Learning can become the foundation of good character, academic achievement, relationship health and general wellbeing.
Social Emotional Learning
The concept of social-emotional learning (SEL) is simple: All humans are both thinking and feeling beings. Students can’t check their emotions at the door any more than they can check their brains, and they need to build their emotional acumen as intentionally as their intellect. These are not ‘extracurricular’ or ‘soft’ skills. Good, strong SEL can become the foundation of good character, academic achievement, relationship health and general wellbeing. School is the perfect environment for children to learn these skills since it is social by its very design. A curriculum that emphasizes social-emotional learning does two things: 1) it gives students specific skills that make them more successful in relating to others, and 2) it teaches them how to manage their emotions so that they are more available for academic learning.
Social Emotional Program Support Provided by School Psychologists
Rebecca Comizio, MA, MEd, was named Connecticut's 2019 School Psychologist of the Year. In 2017, she joined New Canaan Country School as the Early Childhood and Lower School School Psychologist. She is also a licensed professional counselor at the Waverly Group in Old Greenwich, CT. Becca came to NCCS from the Stanwich School in Greenwich, having served as their School Psychologist Pre-K-12th grade and Director of Social Emotional Learning for 3 years. Becca is the founder and co-host of School Psyched Podcast. She also serves in leadership roles for the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP). She is the co-author of 70 Play Activities for Better Thinking, Self-Regulation, Learning, and Behavior and of the upcoming, Resilience Workbook for Kids.
Jackie Britt-Friedman, Middle School and Upper School Psychologist, joined NCCS in 2020. She has experience in both school and clinical settings where she has supported children with a vast array of challenges, including executive functioning weaknesses, learning disabilities, anxiety, mood difficulties, social skills deficits, and other stressors. Before joining NCCS, she worked at Windward School for 13 years and in private practice at The Waverly Group in Greenwich. She earned a B.A. from Middlebury College and a Psy.D. from Ferkauf Graduate School of Psychology in the School-Clinical Child Psychology Program. Dr. Britt-Friedman has spent well over a decade supporting students, their families, and school communities at large. She is licensed as a psychologist in the states of New York and Connecticut and sees children for psychotherapy in private practice.
The new school year is upon us, and understandably, for some it can be an exciting but anxious time. New Canaan Country School psychologists Rebecca Comizio and Jackie Britt-Friedman offer the following tips to help reduce stress around the transition.
Rebecca Comizio, school psychologist at New Canaan Country School, has been selected to be the 2018-2019 “Connecticut School Psychologist of the Year” by the Connecticut Association of School Psychologists, based on nominations and recommendations from supervisors and colleagues. (Read more about her work in the Spring 2019 Bulletin, "What is Social-Emotional Learning? And Why Does it Matter?"
New Canaan Country School admits students of any race, color, national and ethnic origin and are afforded all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, age, sex, sexual orientation, national origin or ancestry, or disability in administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, financial aid policies or any other school-administered programs.