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Boost Emotional Intelligence in Students


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About the Author

Maurice J. Elias, Ph.D., is a professor and former director of clinical training in the Department of Psychology, Rutgers University. He is also director of the Rutgers Social-Emotional and Character Development Lab (, academic director of the Collaborative Center for Community-Based Research and Service (, and founding member of the Leadership Team for the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL). Dr. Elias lectures nationally and internationally and devotes his research and writing to the area of social-emotional and character development in children, schools, and families. He is a licensed psychologist and writes a blog on
social-emotional and character development for the George Lucas Educational Foundation at He lives in New Jersey with his wife, Ellen, near their children and grandchildren.

Steven Tobias, Psy.D., is the director of the Center for Child and Family Development in Morristown, New Jersey. He has over thirty years of experience working with children, parents, families, and schools. Dr. Tobias feels a strong commitment to children's social and emotional development and provides consultation to schools as a way of reaching many children, including those who are underserved in terms of their social and emotional needs. He has coauthored several books with Dr. Maurice Elias, including Emotionally Intelligent Parenting and Raising Emotionally Intelligent Teenagers. He has given lectures throughout the United States on topics related to parenting and children's emotional development. Dr. Tobias lives in New Jersey.


"Boost Emotional Intelligence in Students is exactly what schools need to support social-emotional growth in students. Drs. Elias and Tobias provide an easy-to-understand, step-by-step guide for schools to integrate social and emotional skills building into the classroom. As school psychologists, we understand the importance of building these skills for success in school and life. This book provides everything we need to begin the process."--John Kelly, Ph.D., president, National Association of School Psychologists, 2017-2018
"Using evidence-based lessons, engaging activities, and community-building strategies, this resource provides a valuable tool for educators to build emotional intelligence in students--an essential goal of education in the 21st century. By supporting the development of emotional intelligence, this book helps teachers prepare their students for success in careers and in life." --Andria Amador, senior director, Behavioral Health Services, Boston Public Schools

"Many educators want to improve their students' social and emotional intelligence, but don't know how best to do so. Written by two distinguished psychologists, this wonderful book for teachers is practical, flexible, wise, and consistent with good pedagogical practice. Grounded in research on social-emotional learning and adolescent development, this book equips teachers with the basic knowledge they need to employ the lessons and tools effectively, along with exercises and language that should be attractive to their students." --David Osher, Ph.D., vice president and AIR Institute Fellow, American Institutes for Research

"There exists an important need to translate academic research into classroom practice quickly and directly. This book answers that need by presenting key ideas and activities that teachers can try out with their students immediately. I wish more resources for teachers were created by people like Drs. Elias and Tobias. Boost Emotional Intelligence in Students could have an impact on the ongoing development and implementation of social-emotional learning." --Roisin P. Corcoran, Ph.D., associate professor of education at UCD and coauthor of Developing Emotionally Competent Teachers: Emotional Intelligence and Pre-Service Teacher Education

"Grounded in their conviction that EQ should be at the center of teaching and learning, the authors of Boost Emotional Intelligence in Students provide educators with thirty lessons for middle grade students. The powerful lessons on self-talk offer welcome guidance for building this lifelong skill, which strengthens resilience in students who need it most. The lessons on social roles invite students to consider the strengths they bring to their social identities, which are growing in importance and complexity during adolescence. Ultimately, all the lessons in this book promise to draw students into deeper self-awareness and closer reflection on their developing EQ skills. Definitely a key resource that educators will want on the shelf!" --Christa M. Tinari, coauthor of Create a Culture of Kindness in Middle School and director of the Peaceful Schools Institute
"The authors' combined experience in the field and their clear writing style makes this a good resource for any teacher, counselor, or administrator who is considering beginning a social-emotional program in their class or school. Recommended."--School Library Connection

"This book will be a great addition to your toolkit. I cannot overstate how well-organized this book is and the potential it has to make SEL lessons practical and productive for busy teachers."--Rita Platt, MiddleWeb

"Boost Emotional Intelligence in Students provides a wonderful resource for educators to integrate emotional intelligence skills into their classrooms. From identifying emotions to building resilience, the activities in this book can help students develop into healthy, happy, and productive citizens."--Marc A. Brackett, Ph.D., director of the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence and professor at the Yale Child Study Center

"All teachers and other school professionals working with students in grades 5-9 should read this valuable volume. For experienced educators it offers a wealth of new strategies to promote emotional intelligence; for novices it provides an excellent and highly practical introduction to the field. Elias and Tobias have done a masterful job of translating the EQ research into, in their words, 'pragmatic, accessible, and flexible activities.' I will be strongly recommending this book to all my colleagues."--Paul LeBuffe, vice president of research and development, Aperture Education

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