Student: Miss Duff Mary is sad. (he said this while facing me)
Teacher: How do you know she's sad?
Student: Because I can tell by the sound of her voice.
Teacher: Well, why don't you go over and see what's wrong?
(He gets up and inquires of the other student)
Teacher: So, is the problem solved?
Student: Well, someone farted and they were blaming her and I told her that sometimes people pass gas and that's ok!
Emotions are hard! Which is why we spend a lot of time addressing, naming and working through them. What’s important to note in this conversation, is that the student did not look back at Mary - he simply heard the sound of her voice. This level of awareness is the early signs of emotional intelligence (EI). EI “refers to the ability to identify and manage one’s own emotions, as well as the emotions of others.” With support, he was able to go and help Mary through her feelings and provide some comfort in the process. These kids blow my mind!
Do you have a child or student with high emotional intelligence? What are you doing to continually foster that?