Social wellbeing strategies

Social wellbeing includes the extent to which we experience positive relationships and connectedness to others. It is important for pro-social behaviour and our empathy towards others.

Image: Some social wellbeing programs in schools

Promoting positive relationships and connectedness

Teacher-student connections and provision of teacher support and understanding have a strong impact on students' feelings of belonging. Belonging is associated with increased engagement with learning and education (CESE, 2015). Strategies include:

  • greeting the students by name as they enter the classroom
  • checking in with individual students
  • showing an interest in the students’ lives outside the classroom
  • negotiating classroom rules with the students for creating a safe learning environment
  • encouraging and valuing student voice in classroom decisions.
  • providing choice whenever possible to be responsive to students’ interests, abilities and preferences.
  • communicating positive expectations for learning and behaviour.
  • positively reinforcing students verbally
  • speaking to students privately about any problem behaviour. Make your motivation explicit e.g. 'I am choosing to speak with you privately so that I don’t embarrass you in front of your peers.'

Promoting pro-social behaviour

  • Foster pro-social behaviour by engaging students in helping activities such as peer tutoring, classroom tasks, and teacher assistance
  • Model respectful behaviour and language towards students and staff
  • Use classroom activities and lessons to explore and discuss empathy, personal strengths, fairness, kindness, and social responsibility
  • Use a variety of teaching methods such as discussion questions, extra reading and group projects to foster critical and reflective thinking, problem-solving skills, and the capacity to work effectively with others
  • Teaching and reinforcing positive social skills such as self-awareness, social awareness, responsibility and decision making.
    • Example of self-awareness – show you understand. For example, 'I can understand why you would feel angry. Let’s think this through.'
    • Example of social awareness – encourage perspective taking, 'Bob didn’t realise that was important. I don’t think he did it on purpose – do you?'


  • Student management and wellbeing


  • Wellbeing

Business Unit:

  • Inclusion and Wellbeing
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