How to build your Student Intelligence through a continuous learning cycle
As educators, we all understand the importance of creating an impactful learning environment for students. However, this requires more than a room full of desks, a whiteboard, books, and 1-1 devices with a strong internet connection. Research shows creating a space that fuels student health, happiness, and success requires truly understanding and equipping the whole student. Our team at The Social Institute calls this Student Intelligence.
Student Intelligence represents the unique ability to understand your students’ needs and voices, relate to them, and address the trends and topics that most influence their lives. It means better understanding your students, while better equipping them to navigate their experiences, which in turn fuels even more understanding, and so on – a continuous cycle of learning.
While many educators across the country are already mastering this skill, most still struggle to keep a meaningful pulse on student well-being and school culture.
Time out. Why are educators struggling to build Student Intelligence?
Of course, educators understand the importance of understanding and adapting to students’ unique needs. However, many faculty report feeling unequipped or unprepared to keep up with students, particularly as their social experiences, online and offline, evolve at even faster rates.
Some schools adopt survey tools, deployed at the beginning, middle, and end of the year, trying to understand what students are navigating socially and emotionally. However, what these schools often end up with are outdated insights, low-integrity responses from students, complaints about survey fatigue, or overwhelming amounts of data that they don’t know what to do with.
Other schools avoid surveys and face a disconnect between what their students truly need and what decisions they make. For example, a school might have a hidden, underlying issue with cyberbullying, but because it is happening online and away from the eyes of educators and parents, the community does not fully understand the issue, let alone address it.
Other schools subjectively decide – without data and due to anecdotal evidence – what their biggest issues are and miss the mark. For example, a counselor could speak with several students about a disciplinary issue related to cyberbullying, and so the school figures they have cyberbullying challenges and brings in a one-time speaker.
We’ve all heard about or experienced these approaches.
There has to be an easier, more effective way – and there is.
Imagine what your school could accomplish if you proactively understood – through data – the real-time issues affecting students – and how to effectively take action.
Imagine being able to easily answer the “So what?” question: So what should you do based on what your students are facing? Answering that single question can make all the difference between building a united, empowered school community or having a reactive, ill-informed leadership team.
What if your school understood – and acted on – your students’ needs in real-time?
Julie Mayring, a Middle School Director and licensed psychologist at Bay Ridge Prep in Brooklyn, NY is overcoming these challenges through a more effective, systemic approach. In a recent interview, she explained how her school is using a continuous cycle of learning to strengthen school culture and support students’ needs. Bay Ridge Prep gathers real-time insights through a comprehensive, student well-being curriculum, which then enables the school to make smarter decisions that better support students. This cycle of learning occurs monthly and lasts the entire school year.
Mayring explains, “We’re good at responding in the moment to a student one-on-one when a situation arises. But now, we can look for patterns among grade levels or the school as a whole and act on those insights. For example, if we find that the majority of sixth graders are feeling a certain amount of anxiety at any point in time, we might decide to do an in-service or get the class out on a field trip to have a feel-good day.”
How schools are building Student Intelligence
Building your school’s Student Intelligence is the key to creating an environment that fuels student health, happiness, and success. That’s why, The Social Institute teamed up with school leaders across the country to offer #WinAtSocial Insights – a complementary tool to TSI’s existing #WinAtSocial Curriculum platform – elevating educators’ Student Intelligence while empowering students to master modern life skills, both online and off.
#WinAtSocial Insights delivers powerful, real-time insight into school culture and student experiences by capturing and analyzing patterns in student voices, perspectives, and well-being. Data is captured through student responses in #WinAtSocial Lessons, which are run throughout the year, and then analyzed and shared with educators through an easy-to-understand dashboard, providing actionable steps to further support students. The more you empower students through #WinAtSocial Lessons, the more you collect actionable, data-driven insights about their needs, interests, and well-being. Discover how our partner schools are already using #WinAtSocial Insights to build their Student Intelligence, inform school policies, and strengthen school culture in these webinar.
After a two-year pandemic that has elevated anxiety levels and fueled a need for community and collaboration, there’s never been a better time to truly understand students’ needs, feelings, and voices – and take meaningful action.
The Social Institute (TSI) is the leader in understanding student experiences and creator of #WinAtSocial, a gamified, online learning platform that equips students, educators, and families to navigate social experiences — online and offline — in healthy ways. Our unique, student-respected approach incorporates topics like social media, technology use, and current events that have a significant impact on student well-being. Lessons teach life skills for the modern day to inspire high-character decisions that support the health, happiness, and future success of students, while capturing data that provides insights to school leaders to inform school policy and communications, and enable high-impact teaching and a healthy learning environment. For schools, our turnkey technology allows for easy implementation and a comprehensive game plan to support the well-being of school communities.