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Should SEL Skills Start Including An Explicit Focus On “Conscientiousness”?

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Why students who do well in high school bomb in college is a Washington Post article about a recent study comparing students who did better in college than they did in high school with those who did worse.

They only studied students in one college, but it had some interesting results.

Here’s an excerpt:

what-the-divers-thoseff

The study and article went on to sort of define conscientiousness:

Compared with the average student, divers were less likely to describe themselves as organized or detail-oriented, less likely to say that they are prepared, that they follow a schedule or that they get work done right away. Divers were also more likely to say they crammed for exams and more likely to score highly on measures of impatience.

That definition contains elements of perseverance and self-control, but I’m thinking that there might be value in highlighting it as its own skill. It would certainly be easy enough to create a lesson on it using these and, I assume, other similar studies. And tying it into being better organized would be a nice “hook” for talking with students who might be particularly challenged in that area.

I’m going to give it a shot. Let me know if you’ve had success doing something like it already.

I’m adding this post to The Best Social Emotional Learning (SEL) Resources.

Author: Larry Ferlazzo

I'm a high school teacher in Sacramento, CA.

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