Social-Emotional Learning

Microsoft Adds SEL Elements to Teams and OneNote for Teachers

Microsoft has added new features for Teams and OneNote that are designed to help educators promote social-emotional learning and transparency through their remote and hybrid instructional practices. Among the new functions are "praise badges" in Teams to acknowledge moments of SEL growth; a reflect tool in Teams that makes emotional check-ins a daily routine; and an SEL "sticker pack" for OneNote to provide a way to give feedback.

According to Mark Sparvell, director of Microsoft Education, the praise badges can be used by teachers to point out students' social skills, expand their emotional vocabulary and recognize "daily "wins" in their learning. The badges recognize the pursuit of goals, respect, thoughtfulness and nine other skill practices. They're intended to be used with students ages 10 to 15. They're available for use in chats and class team channels.

Microsoft Adds SEL Elements to Teams and OneNote for Teachers

The new reflection tool allows educators to use questions and polls to guide students to reflect on how they're feeling and promote their self-awareness.

The sticker pack for OneNote recognizes the same 12 skills displayed through the praise badges. In an article about the new features, Sparvell wrote that they're intended to be used in OneNote Class Notebook alongside other features, such as audio and video recordings, typed notes and inking as a feedback mechanism for helping students learn.

Microsoft Adds SEL Elements to Teams and OneNote for Teachers

The company said that the SEL callouts were developed using a human-centered design approach, with input from teachers and students. The new features need to be enabled by the district or school IT administrator who manages Microsoft applications.

More information and links to implementation guides are available on the Microsoft Education website.

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a former senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal, Campus Technology and Spaces4Learning.