EQ Building For Students

From a young age, today’s students face mounting demands in their everyday lives. Beyond the pressure of academic achievement, they must learn to navigate increasingly complex social terrain, make responsible decisions even as peers and role models are celebrated for making poor ones, resist the oft negative influence of the ever present media, all while trying to manage a rapidly changing brain and body. Countless studies involving hundreds of thousands of students and educators over several decades have yielded one clear message: Students with a high EQ do better in school, are more likely to stay in school, have dramatically lower instances of drug and alcohol abuse, are less likely to engage in risky sexual behavior, bully or allow themselves to be bullied, or commit suicide.

By incorporating EQ building—also known as Social Emotional Learning (SEL)—into existing educational programs, or offering as a stand-alone program, with a comprehensive, scalable curriculum, I can help you can empower students with the tools they need to succeed on all fronts. The following are some of the many ways in which your students will demonstrate greater social and emotional competency as a result:

  • Show empathy for fellow students
  • Express their emotions in appropriate ways
  • Communicate respectfully with fellow students and teachers
  • Perceive teachers as supportive and caring
  • Forge healthy friendships
  • Feel invested in their academic progress

What does that mean for educators and administrators?

  • Safer schools
  • Fewer disruptions in class
  • Less truancy
  • Fewer dropouts
  • Greater academic achievement

READ ON for more on Social Emotional Learning and EQ Building, and check out the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning at:

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EQ Building & the Early Adolescent

Consider the challenges of the early adolescent—the heightened, often overwhelming emotions, the profound biological and hormonal shifts, the frantic search for identity, and desperate need to understand themselves and the world around them but without the fully developed cognitive and emotional tools with which to do so effectively.  Early adolescence is a time of acting on impulses without considering the likely consequences, an almost blinding need to fit in, and a compulsion to push boundaries whose meaning and relevance are as yet, a mystery.

And then of course, is the highly formative nature of the brain at this stage of development, which is essentially letting go of countless unused connections in the area of thinking and processing (known as grey matter), and strengthening those connections that are being used.  This is, very simply, a time of hard-wiring attitudes, behaviors, preferences, and skills. “Within social and emotional learning literature is a body of work addressing the development of middle school children. This work concludes that social and emotional learning at this age of vast change positively impacts the development of responsibility, encouragement of empathy, and fostering of self-esteem and hope toward personal resilience “ (Brooks, 1999).

So, if we want to ensure that young people are equipped with the tools needed to successfully navigate the challenging terrain of adolescent and adult life, we need to include as part of their education, those classes and activities that promote a positive outlook, healthy behavior patterns, constructive activity preferences, and the development of self-realization skills—in other words, Social Emotional Learning (SEL).


According to research done by the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL), SEL goes a long way toward supporting both academic learning and the development of an effective school environment. A recent meta-analysis of more than 300 research studies indicates that SEL programs significantly improve students’ academic performance. The study shows, for example, that an average student enrolled in a SEL program ranks at least 11 percentage points higher on achievement tests than students who do not participate in such programs. These students are also likely to have a better grade point average, attendance records, and classroom behavior, and are less likely to be suspended or disciplined, than children who have not been exposed to SEL programs (Durlak, J. A., & Weissberg, R. P., 2005; Zins, et al., 2004). SEL programs can also significantly reduce unhealthy and risk-taking behaviors (Greenberg et al., 2003).

“Elizabeth Kemler is a passionate and talented educator, curriculum developer and author. She is always a pleasure to work with. Her collaborative, detail-oriented and responsive interactions ensure timely delivery of project milestones and successful implementation of newly created curriculum materials.”

Amanda Lynne Smith Dean of Curriculum at Ultimate Medical Academy

“Key to her success in the communication field is the fact that Elizabeth is a superb communicator in her own right. Our students consistently reported that she provides a clear sense of both how skills can be improved and why they are important in both school and work. She has always worked well with faculty and brings passion and idealism to everything she does.”

John Osburn Associate Director of CONNECT at Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art

“Working with Elizabeth has always been inspiring. The most enduring quality I have come to appreciate about her is her resiliency – a determination and willingness to return to the project, curriculum, or situation in order to more fully manifest the intentions and goals originally articulated. At the same time, she is capable of adapting, re-evaluating, and transforming a set of intentions to more fully meet the needs of those being served.”

Eliza Ladd Theater Professor & TBLS Trainer

“I saw a dramatic improvement in the quality of both my presentation skills and content in a remarkably short period of time. I cannot recommend Elizabeth highly enough.”

Thomas Zweifel CEO, Swiss Consulting Group & Professor, Columbia University

“I’d recommend Elizabeth to any company looking to improve the performance of their staff when it counts most – first impressions in front of customers, potential customers or investors!”

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