SKILLS & COMPETENCIES WE TEACH
THE THINK EQUAL PROGRAM
Think Equal believes that the earlier we start the process of introducing social and emotional learning to children, the greater the effect in terms of increasing pro-social behaviors and attitudes, and lessening disaffection, discriminatory, negative, and anti-social behavior patterns into adolescence and beyond.
We have designed and created for this purpose a concrete step by step Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) Program which is simple to implement and detailed. Think Equal has researched and gathered together best practice resources and tools in the field, and has developed its program with advice and input from global experts and visionaries in education, gender, psychology and neuroscience.
Think Equal believes in the learner’s autonomy and in the child as an agent of social change. We aim to empower the learner through various individual narratives, which inform social and emotional development, and create a greater collective narrative. The individual learner is encouraged to play a collaborative and contributive part in the community and the world beyond it. Ubuntu is the underlying philosophy of the Think Equal Program – I am the other you and you are the other me; our humanity is bound together.
“No child is born hating another human being because of the colour of his skin, or his religion, or other background. A child has to learn to hate. And if he can be taught to hate then he can be taught to love, because love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite”
The program is designed to be taught over 30 weeks of the school year. Each week of learning begins with a children’s book, followed by three thirty minute lesson plans, with resources, equaling 1.5 hours of social-emotional instruction per week. Think Equal offers all of its resources for free on condition that they are taught in whole and not in parts, and in the sequence in which they were designed.
Think Equal has developed a teacher training model to ensure committed and high quality delivery of the Think Equal Programme. Taking into account the pressure on teacher’s schedules, and given that the lesson plans include tangible, step by step guidance, the Think Equal training has been designed to last just 2 days.
The pilot programmes in 7 of these countries (Argentina, Botswana, Canada, Kenya, India, Singapore and Sri Lanka) are being evaluated by our partners at the Yale Centre for Emotional Intelligence.
The following is an excerpt from the Yale impact evaluation of the Think Equal pilot programme in Botswana:
“Think Equal was piloted and studied using a randomized controlled trial design, the “gold standard” for exploring programme impact. Before training, Botswana preschools were randomized to either receive Think Equal or to operate as they normally would. Teachers in both groups reported on children’s social and emotional behavior using widely-used, validated assessments. Results revealed that children exposed to Think Equal were more socially and emotionally skilled and substantially less likely to be angry, aggressive, anxious, or withdrawn than their peers who did not have access to Think Equal. These impacts were large, and for some outcomes, constituted a one-and-a-half standard deviation difference between children exposed to Think Equal and children in control classrooms. These strong impacts are supported by anecdotal reports from educators”.