The Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence RULER Approach
We are excited to continue our implementation of the RULER program, an evidence-based approach to social and emotional learning from Yale’s Center for Emotional Intelligence, that helps school communities integrate the teaching of emotional intelligence into daily life. RULER teaches five key emotional intelligence skills:
Recognizing emotions in one’s self and others.
Understanding the causes and consequences of emotions.
Labeling emotions accurately.
Expressing emotions appropriately.
Regulating emotions effectively.
RULER integrates these skills into the academic curriculum and provides opportunities for students and all the key adults involved in their education – teachers, administrators, and family members – to learn and apply these skills. Decades of research shows that emotional intelligence is essential to effective teaching and learning, sound decision making, physical and mental health, and success in school and beyond. Research also shows that when schools and homes partner to support children’s emotional development, children not only feel better, but they do better.
DK-2nd grade classrooms begin the school year by creating and signing a class charter that focuses on how students want to feel, what needs to happen for those feelings to be consistently present, and guidelines for handling uncomfortable feelings and conflict. This helps set a foundation for creating and sustaining a positive learning environment. Throughout the year students will use other RULER tools such as the Mood Meter, Meta-Moment and Blueprint to further their understanding of their emotions and how to best manage them. In addition, students will explore the RULER Feeling Words Curriculum this year. The goal of the Feeling Words Curriculum is to integrate increasingly nuanced and sophisticated emotional vocabulary into existing academic curriculum. Activities will include analysis of academic materials and current events, self-reflection, discussions, activities, and family interactions. This is an important part of our integrated approach to curriculum, as well as our commitment to continuing to foster, nurture, and grow our emotional intelligence.
We partner with our parents, continually sharing RULER resources and workshops, to help parents practice the skills of emotional intelligence at home and learn about how it’s being implemented in the classroom. We’re proud to be a school community who understands that “emotions matter” and that how children feel has profound implications for learning, success, and wellbeing. Our goal is to equip The Willows children for success today, and for life.