This week, members of the TAF team went to see the Disney Pixar movie Inside Out. Everyone loved the movie and agreed with the film’s lessons about social and emotional learning. The movie tells the story of a girl named Riley, who moves from Minnesota to San Francisco, along with the personified emotions in her head. We are introduced to the characters of Joy, Sadness, Anger, Disgust, and Fear, who are important for governing Riley’s behavior. While adjusting to her new home, Riley’s brain and core memories, which had usually been dominated by Joy, start to be influenced by other emotions, while Joy struggles to keep everything under control. Through a series of mishaps within Riley’s brain, Joy and Sadness end up on their own adventure, where Joy learns that other emotions are just as important in creating memories and personality. By the end of the movie, she realizes that you need a balance of all of your emotions for a healthy brain. In other words, you need Sadness to be able to feel and recognize Joy. This film does a terrific job of showing how to recognize emotions, a skill that is not only important to teach children, but adults as well. Riley’s five personified emotional characters are sufficient to guide and determine her childhood behavior, but as she gets older life’s complexities are manifest in the interaction of many emotional characters.
The Avielle Foundation is committed to helping build social and emotional learning and leadership skills. We feel these are the most valuable skills with which we can empower our children. So important, in fact, that we feel it is critical we spread the message to the greater community. Towards this end, the Avielle Foundation is a proud sponsor of the Spark Program. The Spark Program is committed to engendering these skill sets throughout a community. Empowering adults to not only be able to practice these skills for themselves, but also to model them for their children. Teaching social and emotional intelligence from an early age and continuing to use these skills is incredibly important. We know scientifically that higher social and emotional intelligence is directly related to improved health and happiness!