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Thread: Can Emotional Intelligence Be Taught?

  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by PeaceBaby View Post
    Hmm. I find myself thinking of the child who learns to assert in this manner, goes home, tries out their new skill, and gets struck for the attempt. There's a lack of wisdom in this, no discernment of the subtlety of things ...
    This was my first reaction. Poor parenting comes from parents who lack, which includes having anger issues. Imagining the scenario at home could easily end up like this:

    Child: I don't like it when you scream at me.
    Screaming parent: Why you little disrespectful ingrate! *brings out the belt*

    Exceedingly poorly thought out by the educator, putting little children at risk.

  2. #22
    Alchemist of life Array Coriolis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PeaceBaby View Post
    I hesitate to think that a program kit and one hour of teacher training is going to suddenly unlock the EQ world for these kids. If anything, it may fail to teach the kinds of observational skills necessary to know when to make emotional judgements. This kind of emotional awareness to me has to be woven through the entire day as real-world situations arise. However, I think it's useful at the very least that such programs provide even a cursory glance at the concept that feelings are important. I know that if there had been these types of materials when I was in grade school I would have been very drawn to them. If I was a teacher I'd be eager to look to them for foundational support.
    I suppose there is merit to this, in helping students understand better how others see the world differently. It is not necessary to teach or require students to make emotional judgments, though. For those students inclined to this approach, helping them develop it makes sense. For those who are not, it is enough for them to accept the importance of feelings for others, and to learn methods of handling conflict and misunderstanding better suited to them.

    Quote Originally Posted by FineLine View Post
    As the author points out in the article, there is little or no research supporting the idea that these kinds of classes do any good. OTOH, there is some evidence showing that they may harm kids: The article cites the example of the self-esteem movement taught in schools in the 1980s resulting in kids with higher narcissism scores.
    This is endemic in education: implementing fads and novelties in schools, when there is no evidence to support their effectiveness. Innovation is one thing, but we should not be using broad segments of our school populations as guinea pigs in such an unsound manner. Overlay the rampant politics and emotionalism surrounding education policy, and it is almost impossible to get an objective analysis of any relevant issue.

    Quote Originally Posted by FineLine View Post
    But mostly I think these classes just don’t have much effect. Teachers teach them by rote, kids learn them by rote, and then the kids never really apply them in their daily life. Daily life doesn’t tend to cooperate with emotional techniques taught in the classroom. It’s like my own experience that I described in the first paragraph: Kids compartmentalize. Kids don’t make the connect between the neat little drills that are taught in school and the grit and fears and travails of daily life outside of school.
    I wouldn't discount the role of rote learning so quickly. It is a bad way to learn information/knowledge, but a good way to instill habits. Most of us learned to do things like say "please" and "thank you" as young children by rote, long before we understood what those words really meant. This is related to the idea that, while we cannot tell someone what to think or feel, in school or work settings, we can tell them what to do. Schools can do much better in training students in the behaviors that are productive in adult life. We need to set the bar higher, for both students and staff, since many school practices actually encourage kids to stay childish rather than to develop adult skills.
    Hope is the denial of reality. It is the carrot dangled before the draft horse to keep him plodding along in a vain attempt to reach it. We should remove the carrot and walk forward with our eyes open. -- Raistlin Majere

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