Teaching and learning in schools have strong social, emotional, and academic components. Students typically do not learn alone, but rather in collaboration with their teachers, in the company of their peers, and with the encouragement of their families.
Emotions can facilitate or impede children’s academic engagement, work ethic, commitment, and ultimate school success. Because relationships and emotional processes affect how and what we learn, schools and families must effectively address these aspects of the educational process for the benefit of all students.
A key challenge for 21st-century schools involves serving culturally diverse students with varied and special abilities and motivations for learning. Unfortunately, many students lack social-emotional competencies and become less connected to school as they progress from elementary to middle to high school, and this lack of connection negatively affects their performance, behaviour, and health.
Primary schools have an important role to play in raising children’s talents by fostering not only their cognitive development, but also their social and emotional development. Yet schools have limited resources to address all of these areas and are experiencing intense pressures to enhance academic performance with traditionally didactic strategies of formal learning. Given time constraints and competing demands, educators must prioritise and effectively implement evidence-based approaches that produce multiple benefits. But it has been demonstrated that it is not enough to summarize the promotion of social and emotional learning and academic learning in universal school-based efforts. The added value of META Project is to insert , trough arts and music education, emotional and social learning into formal learning of primary schools; and to demonstrate in which way it is possible to propose a new curriculum didactic strategy of primary education of children. So, the proximal goals of META project may be to foster a systemic proposal of the development, trough arts and music in all subjects academic learning, of five inter-related sets of cognitive, affective, and behavioural competencies: self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, relationship skills, and responsible decision making. These competencies, in turn, should provide a foundation for expansive learning into different academic performances of primary schools.
There is also broad agreement among educators, policy-makers, and the public that educational systems should graduate students who are proficient in core academic subjects, able to work well with others from diverse back-grounds in socially and emotionally skilled ways, practice healthy behaviours, and behave responsibly and respectfully. In other words, schools have an important role to play in raising healthy children by fostering not only their cognitive development, but also their social and emotional development.
Why Integrate Formal and non formal Learning? Experts propose that more can be taught and learned in less time and at higher levels of learning if we connect different subjects with different cultural context and setting. Curriculum connections also eliminate duplication of teaching efforts while simultaneously providing opportunities for cooperative instructional planning for school faculty and staff. These environments are conducive to academic attainment because teachers are constantly learning, planning, and applying findings from their joint inquiries into how to improve learning opportunities and instruction for students. Such environments lead to more differentiation in producing different learning styles in pupils. Integration can be utilized as a venue to develop both complex-cognitive and career-related soft skills, preparing students of today to become college- and career-ready for tomorrow.
The pedagogical approach of META project intend to integrate competence-promotion and youth-development frameworks for reducing risk factors and fostering expansive learning mechanisms for positive adjustment. Pedagogical Model of META researchers and program designers build description of competent people as those who have the abilities to generate and coordinate flexible, adaptive responses to demands and to generate and capitalize on opportunities in the global and dialectic social environment. So, the objective is to develop the process of acquiring core competencies, to recognize and manage emotions, set and achieve positive goals, appreciate the cultural perspectives of others, establish and maintain positive relationships, make responsible decisions, and handle interpersonal situations constructively. The proximal goals of this program are to foster the development of five inter-related sets of cognitive, affective, and behavioural competencies: self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, relationship skills, and responsible decision making. These competencies, in turn, should provide (for different population–target involved by the Project) a foundation for better adjustment and academic performance as reflected in more positive social behaviours, fewer conduct problems, less emotional distress, and improved test scores and grades.
We suggest that in order to promote new EU policies that implement an integrated new framework of curriculum in primary schools, it is possible to underline their scope into talent development. What is talent for the purposes of development of competencies in the primary school curriculum? Does talent development focus on specific or generic competencies or both? What are the learning needs that are the primary focus of talent development for all pupils? Does talent development occur in an accelerated or normal way? What are the pathways, programmes and processes that contribute to enrich the architecture of talent development for all pupils? Answers to these questions should help to bring some coherence to the scope of the concept. For the purpose of META Project we can define talent education as follows: Talent education focuses on the planning, selection and implementation of development strategies for the entire talent pool to ensure that the learning environments have both the current and future supply of talent to meet strategic objectives and that development activities are aligned with talent development trough long life learning processes and life experiences.