Training and Access Project Online Training: An Overview of Social-Emotional Development: What Can We Expect in the Classroom?

Training and Access Project Online Training: An Overview of Social-Emotional Development: What Can We Expect in the Classroom?

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The Clough Foundation Training and Access Project (TAP) is a part of the Boston Children's Hospital Neighborhood Partnerships Program (BCHNP) in the Department of Psychiatry at Boston Children's Hospital. TAP offers high-quality professional development and consultation services to Boston schools to help build capacity to address students' social, emotional, and behavioral health needs. The project has partnered with 10 Boston Public Schools and will expand to 25 schools by 2021. 

In order to reach more schools beyond Boston, TAP is developing a series of free online trainings for educators and school communities everywhere. The online trainings cover a variety of topics related to social, emotional, and behavioral health in schools and are adapted from a series of live trainings facilitated in partnership with the Boston Public Schools.

Since 2015, TAP has facilitated a Learning Collaborative with Boston schools. The Learning Collaborative brings together teams from participating schools for a series of professional development workshops. Participants include administrators, teachers, nurses, social workers, psychologists, support staff, and specialists. The Collaborative is based on the concept that knowledge is gained through people actively interacting and sharing experiences. Facilitators and participants have had both overlapping and unique experiences and participants can capitalize on one another’s resources and skills. This model of learning engages participants by utilizing different methods for presenting and discussing material including group activities, small and large group discussion, team reflections, didactic presentations, and opportunities to network with individuals from different schools. The trainings consist of a blend of theory and practice. Over the past two years, TAP has evaluated and enhanced the trainings to prepare them for this video series.

This first online training in the TAP series is called "An Overview of Social Emotional Development: What Can We Expect in the Classroom?" This workshop includes information about social, emotional, and behavioral health in schools and incorporates important concepts such as engaging families, cultural sensitivity, and the impact of social-emotional development in academics and learning. The workshop also highlights strategies and activities that can be easily used in the classroom to promote social-emotional skills. There are additional resources provided upon completion of the workshop.  

Upon successful completion of this training, participants will receive a certificate of completion. To be granted access to the library of resources mentioned in this video, please send this certificate to

Please visit our website for more information and instructions, or contact us at with questions regarding this training. The BCHNP team is available by email or phone beyond the training for consultation.


Course Format

This training consists of a series of six chapters listed below. By the end of the training, the goal is for each participant to have a foundational understanding of social-emotional development and knowledge about implementing strategies to enhance students' skills in their classroom or school.

  • Chapter 1: Introduction to Overview of Social-Emotional Development: What to Expect in the Classroom?
  • Chapter 2: What Do We Know About Social-Emotional Development?
  • Chapter 3: Introduction to Social-Emotional Development with Different Age Groups
  • Chapter 4: Factors that Impact Social-Emotional Development
  • Chapter 5: Strategies to Address Social-Emotional Skills in the Classroom
  • Chapter 6: Closing Summary

Learning Objectives

Participants will: 

  • Describe ways in which children’s environments may impact their behavior and learning
  • Learn about the expected social-emotional skills for children of various age groups
  • Have an understanding of the five key competencies of social-emotional learning
  • Describe strategies and activities to foster children’s healthy social-emotional development at school

Statement of Need

There is a national crisis in the accessibility and availability of behavioral health services for children and adolescents. Approximately 20% of youth are in need of behavioral health interventions1, and in urban areas, this number is often much higher. Nationwide, only 20-30% of children who need behavioral health services are receiving care2.

Schools have become the de facto providers of behavioral health services for children, providing an estimated 70-80% of psychosocial services to those children who receive them3. As a result, school-based behavioral health services are evolving as a primary strategy to remove barriers to access and to improve coordination of care for children and adolescents1. There is increasing recognition that a "shared agenda" involving collaboration among leaders and staff from behavioral health and school systems, along with families and other stakeholders is needed to promote youth’s success in school4.

Providing support for social, emotional, and behavioral health in schools reaches beyond intensive and traditional clinical services. School-wide supports are essential to providing a safe and supportive learning environment and all educators have an impact on a student’s development.5 Research shows that students are more likely to be engaged in learning and feel supported when they perceive school staff as dedicated to emotionally supporting students.6 Providing educators with the necessary tools to promote healthy social emotional development has shown to improve academic performance, lower discipline rates, and increased attendance.7 When educators have the necessary information and skills to address students’ social, emotional, and behavioral health in the classroom, all students can benefit. 

Suggested Audience

  • School Administrators
  • Teacher and School Staff
  • School Psychologists
  • Social Workers
  • Adjustment Counselors, Guidance Counselors, School Counselors
  • School Nurses
  • School-Based Behavioral Health Agencies and Partners

Curriculum Directors

Shella Dennery, LICSW, PhD, Andie Fox, LICSW, MEd, Molly Jordan, LICSW


Elizabeth Belton, LICSW, Sue Costello, LICSW, Amy Kaye, PhD, Vanja Pejic, PhD

Marketing and Communications Specialist

Priscila Paulino, MS

Video Production

Giro Studio

Release Date

  • August 17, 2017

Instructional Time

  • 2 Hours, 00 Minutes

We would like to thank our donors for making this project possible:

  • The Manton Foundation
  • Gloria and Charles Clough Foundation
  • C.F. Adams Charitable Trust

We also encourage you to view the Break Free from Depression Curriculum developed by the Boston Children's Hospital Neighborhood Partnerships Program. This is a 4-module curriculum focused on increasing awareness about adolescent depression designed for use in high school classrooms. Throughout the curriculum, there are didactic presentations, interactive activities, and opportunities for discussion. The goals are to increase awareness about depression and suicide, identify signs and symptoms of depression in oneself and peers, and provide strategies for finding help. 


1Committee on School Health (2004). School-based mental health services. Pediatrics, 113(6), 1839-1845

2Weist, M.D., & Evans, S.W. (2005). Expanded school mental health: Challenges and opportunities in an emerging field. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 34(1), 3-6.  

3Rones, M., & Hoagwood, K. (2000). School-based mental health services: A research review. Clinical Child and Family Psychology Review, 3(4), 223-241.

4Andis, P., Cashman, J., Oglesby, D., Praschil, R., Adelman, H., Taylor, L., and Weist, M. (2002). A strategic and shared agenda to advance mental health in schools through family and system partnerships. International Journal of Mental Health Promotion, 4(4), 28-35

5Mizell, H. (2010). Why Professional Development Matters. Learning Forward. 504 South Locust Street, Oxford, OH 45056.

6Center for Disease Control and Prevention Adolescent and School Health Resources:

7Durlak, J. A., Weissberg, R. P., Dymnicki, A. B., Taylor, R. D., & Schellinger, K. B. (2011). The impact of enhancing students’ social and emotional learning: A meta‐analysis of school‐based universal interventions. Child development, 82(1), 405-432.