Encourage Effective Problem Solving

Each week on the QuaverSEL blog, we highlight one of the core CASEL competencies and a sub-skill. Today, we’re taking a look at responsible decision-making and an activity to help students recognize and identify problems.

Let’s dive in! 

Today, we’ll take a look at a simple activity that can help students to identify what makes something a problem and what emotions accompany big and small problems. It can be done in just 5-10 minutes, or stretched out into a longer activity!

Do We Have a Problem?

Found in Lesson 15 of the Kindergarten Curriculum, this screen helps students learn to recognize and name a problem and decide between a situation that is a problem and one that isn’t. 

Divide students into groups. Click the yellow PLAY button on the first blue square. After listening to the audio, ask students to decide if the situation described is a problem or not. If it’s not, have students explain why.

An example you might hear is:

“There was no one at my house when I got home from school!”

Click the question mark on each box to reveal a character’s face. What emotions might they be feeling about this problem?

If the class demonstrates an advanced grasp on these skills, you might consider leading a discussion on big and small problems. Which of these situations would students consider a big problem? A small problem?

These are just a few of the resources at your disposal for addressing responsible decision-making and identifying problems. You can find more short activities that focus on identifying problems by selecting the Responsible Decision-Making icon in Resource Manager. 

Stay tuned to the blog in the coming weeks as we dive into a unique SEL skill: Academic Achievement!

How will you address responsible decision-making in your classroom?