Addressing the Recovery of Children’s Social Skills

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Addressing the Recovery of Children’s Social Skills

As teachers across the country report that children are far less emotionally developed than expected for their age, over 67% of teachers have observed a decline in pupils’ behaviour since the pandemic. With this in mind, an increasing number of schools are now working in partnership with Evolve to support their recovery plans.

Multiple nationwide lockdowns and the shift to remote learning has reduced children’s ability to socialise with their peers and research emerging from the pandemic suggests that children’s social development and the gap between disadvantaged pupils and their peers has grown wider.

As social and emotional skills are intrinsically linked to self-esteem,  it is no surprise that a 2022 study found that 86% of teachers thought their students had lower self-esteem post-COVID. Again, disadvantaged children have fared worse, with the Department of Education reporting that it could take more than a decade to shift the gap between disadvantaged pupils and peers in terms of their social skills.

Evolve Health Mentors work directly with disadvantaged children within schools, to close this social skills gap and to improve their wellbeing, mindset and school performance. Health Mentors monitor children’s wellbeing using the Wellbeing Compass, a proprietary impact measurement system, that tracks a variety of different areas, including personal development. Questions within this domain measure the strength of children’s social skills, emotional development and their ability to persevere through challenges. Within just one term, mentees at a school in the West Midlands were able to increase their personal development scores by 8% and significantly improve their resilience, whilst the scores of pupils not receiving the mentoring programme remained the same. 

So how did Health Mentors help children to achieve this?

Personal development is a key focus of individual and group mentoring sessions related to this health domain. Through 1-1 mentoring sessions, children are encouraged to discuss how they are feeling and in turn strengthen their emotional awareness and communication skills. Children are also introduced to tools and techniques to develop key character traits that have been shown to result in improved academic and longer term life outcomes, including optimism, grit and gratitude.

Practical group mentoring sessions also encourage children to develop important social skills such as collaboration, problem solving and critical thinking. These traits help to develop confidence, curiosity and enthusiasm, which also translate to improved school performance.

If you would like to learn how our Health Mentors could provide these wellbeing improvements and character developing services for your pupils, contact us at the full article about children’s social skills post-covid here.