Academic success relies on three key factors that complement quality instruction. These three factors – physical, emotional and social safety – are basic needs that form the foundation for academic learning.
Whole-child education means creating the conditions in which students feel safe and supported in these basic needs. The phrase, “Maslow before Bloom” is a common one in educational circles, because it describes the prioritization of needs for successful learning. Physical, social and emotional safety are the foundation for academic success. It’s only when students feel supported in each of these areas that they are mentally prepared to pursue academic learning.
Three Keys to Supporting Students
How can schools give their students the benefit of a whole-child approach to education? Each of the three basic needs for safety must be in place for academic instruction to be effective.
In an era of school shootings and increasing trends of violence on campus, students and teachers alike are on edge. Physical classroom and campus safety can go a long way toward helping students (and staff) feel more secure. Additionally, providing training and instruction on how to respond to such incidents can empower students to participate in their own safety.
Identifying and managing emotions and having a secure environment in which to process these emotions can help students to grow, develop and mature appropriately. This can also help students to recognize mental health challenges and seek assistance before they escalate.
Bullying and harassment are such common experiences that literature and the media use them as plot devices. However, the trauma created by such acts can have far-reaching effects, not only for the victim but for witnesses, as well. Creating a learning environment in which all students feel safe to express their unique identities is critical to mental health and wellness.
A whole-child approach to education can be beneficial to everyone in your school community. Safe and supportive educational environments produce better mental health and wellness, improved student engagement and increased academic achievement.
Examining the Whole-Child Approach at PBIScon23
PBIS Rewards is excited to present our conference track, A Whole Child Approach, at PBIScon23. When viewed through the lens of PBIS, a whole-child approach includes social-emotional learning, building relationships and giving positive reinforcement. A PBIS initiative can be a powerful ally in creating a safe and supportive learning environment for ALL students. We’ve got some great presentations lined up to expand on the whole-child approach, including:
- Separating the Deed From the Doer
- The Impact of Collaborative Practices in Whole-Child Education
- Restorative Practices: Repairing Relationships to Improve Behaviors
- … and more!
Navigate360 thought leader Dr. Scott Poland will also address the need for whole-child education in his breakout presentation, “Making a Difference for Students in a Challenging World.”
Join Us at PBIScon23
A Whole Child Approach is just one of the conference tracks being presented at PBIScon23, which takes place virtually June 21-22, 2023. You won’t want to miss connecting with other educators and learning about PBIS, leadership, campus culture, and more.
In late 2022, PBIS Rewards joined Navigate360, the premier provider of holistic solutions for school safety and student wellness. PBIScon23 will provide you an opportunity to explore all of the solutions offered by Navigate360, including PBIS Rewards and Suite360, Navigate360’s social-emotional learning curriculum.
Register for PBIScon23 and attend from wherever you are – no travel necessary!
We hope to see you at PBIScon23!