Foundations

Our materials guide educators through instructional practices derived from seven key research-based concepts. Building Positive Learning communities means creating supportive environments that engage and include ALL learners across the full range of educational settings. Want to learn more about our foundational research and principles? Read our White Paper here.

  • Cognitive Flexibility: Flexible thinking helps students adapt to new situations, improvising and shifting their social strategies to meet the demands of different circumstances. The work focuses on specific enjoyable tasks that develop cognitive flexibility, as drawn from a large body of research in the neurosciences.  
  • Acting with PurposeStudents engage with basic acting tools, theater questions, and rehearsal techniques that teach observation, self-awareness, character and analysis of social context. These shared experiences within the classroom setting strengthen social competencies, expanding functional application, positivity, inclusion, and compassion throughout the day.
  • Mindfulness: Mindful moments are opportunities for educators and students to find more calm and peace within their day. More than anything else the practice of mindfulness is a practice of compassion toward one self and others. We’ve created classroom manipulatives that bring tools for mind-ful self-regulation into any learning environment, and we include techniques for centering and calming in all our teaching materials.
  • Speech Pathology: Historically, the field of Speech Pathology has led the way in understanding how students develop and use effective social strategies. Best practices in this field provide powerful tools for teachers to guide students toward social emotional competencies without judgment.
  • Whole Body Listening: The practice of Whole Body Listening demonstrates respect for others and strengthens understanding and awareness of personal responsibility. The “Whole Body Listening” concept was developed by Susanne Poulette Truesdale in 1990 and has become a cornerstone of social emotional and academic learning.
  • Theory of Mind: Understanding that individuals have different internal experiences is fundamental to social interaction. Understanding Theory of Mind helps students develop empathy and increases our capacity to connect with others.   
  • Perspective Taking: When we empathize with other people and see things from their point of view we are “taking perspective.” Our work provides concrete tools to model consistent exploration, analysis and practice understanding and acting on the thoughts and feelings of others.