Social-Emotional Learning

The Ensemble seeks to connect and inform all people who are committed to ensemble music education for youth empowerment and social change.

In Toronto, a Student-Driven Social Curriculum Inspires New Learning

04-06-2021

When Toronto’s schools closed in March 2020, we knew we were in for a challenging spring of adapting to the technological and musical challenges of remote learning. We also knew that students would be struggling with feelings of isolation, anxiety, and boredom, and it would be vitally important for us to offer help with these emotional and social challenges. Luckily, we were somewhat prepared for the transition, thanks to our Social Curriculum activities. These activities had the potential to be a key support for our students and staff—as long as we could figure out an effective, accessible way to adapt them to the online format.

Ensuring Equity and Anti-Racism in SEL

04-06-2021

Social-emotional Learning (SEL) has served as a foundational tenet of the El Sistema movement for over two decades, even before that acronym became widely known. Sometimes referred to as character strengths, soft skills, or life skills, SEL encapsulates a desire to instill children and youth with the non-academic emotional and social skills necessary for school and life success. El Sistema programs can enhance social-emotional learning through a number of means that have been described here, here, here, and here (and in the feature article of this issue here).

A Social Skills Curriculum

08-01-2018

Sistema Toronto is in its second year of a three-year project dedicated to building a detailed and integrated curriculum focused on musical and social learning outcomes for its 250 students, aged 6-12. The music curricula components include music and moment, strings, choir, and percussion. We are also creating an integrated social curriculum, developed by a team of our teachers and rooted in experiential learning pedagogy, that is intended to be woven into teaching and learning outcomes for all music classes.

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