South Carolina: SEL for Pre-K and Beyond

South Carolina has adopted social emotional learning skills for early childhood development, but the most recent results from the High School Youth Risk Behavior Survey indicate that students need social emotional support throughout their entire education. According to the 2017 results, 33% of South Carolina high school students reported feeling sad or hopeless every day for 2 weeks or more in row, and a whopping 19% of high school students reported that they seriously considered attempting suicide.

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In addition to supporting students with their immediate emotional needs, a comprehensive SEL curriculum impacts students for years to come.

  • Students who participate in SEL programs historically have shown an 11 percentile-point gain in academic achievement (CASEL).

  • Students who participate in SEL programs show improved classroom behavior, an increased ability to manage stress and depression, better attitudes about themselves, others, and schools (CASEL).

  • Schools that have implemented Move This World have seen a 28% decrease in incident reports (MBZLabs).

  • Students who participate in SEL programs gain employable skills like the ability to make decisions, solve problems, organize, communicate, and work in a team structure. (2014 survey by the National Association of Colleges and Employers).

What do the South Carolina standards require? 

South Carolina SEL standards have been adopted for PreK aligned to three domains. Developing a sense of self developing with others, and learning about feelings.

Educators in South Carolina can support these skills (and more!) beyond early childhood. Below, we break down how the South Carolina standards align to Move This World’s learning objectives to give you an idea of how the standards can be expanded to better support students.

Developing a sense of self

South Carolina’s learning goals:

  1. Children demonstrate a positive sense of self-identity and self-awareness.

  2. Children express positive feelings about themselves and confidence in what they can do.

Move This World’s learning objectives:

  1. Identify and describe how different situations make us feel.

  2. Recognize how emotions impact our actions and behavior.

  3. Identify and value strengths, including abilities and accomplishments.

  4. Measure progress towards goals.

  5. Communicate feelings in “I” statements.

Developing a sense of self with others

South Carolina’s learning goals: 

  1. Children form relationships and interact positively with familiar adults who are consistent and responsive to their needs.

  2. Children form relationships and interact positively with other children.

  3. Children demonstrate the social and behavioral skills needed to successfully participate in groups.

Move This World’s learning objectives: 

  1. Describe how to make and keep friends.

  2. Express interest and appreciation for others.

  3. Recognize the consequences of dishonest behavior to oneself and others.

  4. Listen to others and respond respectfully.

  5. Identify ways to build positive relationships with peers.

Learn about feelings

South Carolina’s learning goals: 

  1. Children identify, manage, and express their feelings.

  2. Children recognize and respond appropriately to the needs and feelings of others.

Move This World’s learning objectives: 

  1. Recognize and label a variety of emotions.

  2. Recognize how our emotions and behavior impacts others.

  3. Describe a variety of emotions/feelings and the situations that cause them.

  4. Understand and express emotions in an appropriate manner.

  5. Identify and describe how different situations make us feel.

A school or district-wide social and emotional learning plan can support all students, staff, and families in your community. Beginning this work in PreK establishes a foundation, but continuing SEL development in higher grades impacts other outcomes, like improved academic performance and decreased behavioral incidents. Additionally, a Tier 1 approach to SEL helps provide a common language around social and emotional skills so that students, staff, and families can all participate in creating a positive school culture. District-wide SEL initiatives often include more emotional supports for adults, reducing teacher turnover and creating happier school environments. Learn how Move This World has impacted communities in Nashville, Tennessee or contact our team to learn more about bringing social and emotional support to your district.


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