Service Leadership Programs

Social and Emotional Skills

How does Key Leader impact youth? It helps participants in developing important social and emotional skills, which allow them to understand self and develop meaningful connections with others. These skills enable young people to calm themselves when angry, initiate friendships, resolve relationship conflicts respectfully, and make ethical and safe choices.

The five core categories of social and emotional learning are listed below. The skill sets that are emphasized through participation in Key Leader are italicized.


Accurately accessing one's feelings, interests, values, and strengths/abilities, and maintaining a well-grounded sense of self-confidence.


Regulating one's emotions to handle stress, control impulses, and persevere in overcoming obstacles; setting personal goals and academic goals and then monitoring one's progress toward achieving them. The ability to express emotions constructively.

Social awareness

Taking the perspective of empathizing with others; recognizing and appreciating individual and group similarities and differences; identifying the following social standards of conduct; and recognizing and using family, school, and community resources.

Relationship skills

Establishing and maintaining healthy and rewarding relationships based on cooperation; resisting inappropriate social pressure; preventing, managing, and resolving interpersonal conflict; and seeking help when needed.

Responsible decision-making

Making decisions based on consideration of ethical standards, safety concerns, appropriate standards of conduct, respect for others, and likely consequences of various actions; applying decision-making skills to academic and social situations; and contributing to the well-being of one's school and community.

Learn more

Visit the Collaborative for Academic, Social and Emotional Learning, CASEL, to learn more about how social and emotional skills make a difference in a young person and his/her future.

NBC News Education Nation has produced an online Social and Emotional Learning toolkit for parents that offers a wide variety of resources and information. This toolkit can be used by anyone interested in helping young people attain these skills. 

Learn more at