Give Students A Chance To Improve Mental Health Across Campus!

Mentoring programs are a must have for every school community, but many lack structure and curriculum needed to find success. TEEN TRUTH’s mentoring curriculum is a peer-to-peer approach that provides crucial aspects of social-emotional learning while also focusing on the relationship building that every great mentoring program should manifest. Whether you are a school leader, caring adult, or club advisor, running an effective mentoring program requires a plug and play curriculum that is fun for student leaders to teach, and also engaging enough for their student mentees to  want to learn.

What is a Mentoring Curriculum?

A mentoring curriculum is a peer-to-peer program that provides a structure for students to connect on campus. It serves as the backbone of a mentoring program that pairs older students with younger students. TEEN TRUTH’s mentoring curriculum is unique in that it provides twenty socially and emotionally focused modules for student mentors to teach in-class over the course of a semester or school year. These SEL lessons are critical in developing resiliency, as well as supporting the relational bonds created through the mentoring program. Our schools have found that mentoring programs are a great way to empower student voice and build school culture from the inside out!

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“TEEN TRUTH’s Mentoring Curriculum has been a game changer for our students and our counseling program!”

Jody Clark

School Counselor, Scoggins Middle School

Social & Emotional Guidance Programs For Schools

Peer-to-Peer Program

Our Mentoring Curriculum is infused with student voice and  designed to teach teens how to develop valuable life skills that will enhance their self-development. Focused on inspiring students to build resiliency and find growth in adversity, this innovative program will help schools extend their guidance efforts on campus. Working with a select group of “peer coaches” our mental health curriculum is built to strengthen students at both younger and older grade levels. Ideal for high school and middle school aged audiences, this curriculum is used by school counselors, after-school professionals, and campus administrators across the country.

Mentoring Curriculum

Bullying and suicide prevention efforts are top of mind on every campus, but in many states, the student to counselor ratio is 500 to 1.  In some schools that ratio is over 800 to 1! With counselors spread so thin, how is it even possible to create solutions for these important social-emotional issues? Our mentoring curriculum was created to solve this problem. School counselors need to extend their guidance efforts beyond the one on one counseling services that they have traditionally been expected to provide. This SEL curriculum puts student leaders in the position to keep these valuable lessons moving forward.

Build Student Leaders

Ideally, when working in this program, older students (coaches) will be trained during an interactive workshop with a certified  trainer. This session will teach students the importance of “coaching” younger students to a better understanding of themselves and the world around them. Coaches then go into classrooms to teach SEL lessons to younger students. Easily modified or expanded, this curriculum is ideal for 8th graders to work with 6th graders or for juniors to work with freshman. It is also perfectly designed to provide B- and C+ students a leadership opporuntity that will positively change their engagement on campus.

Curriculum Implementation

All coaching sessions can be completed during in-class guidance sessions, advisory periods, special meetings, workshops, or through after-school/lunch time activities. Aligned with the ASCA School Counseling Model this mentoring curriculum has been used in anti-bully efforts and heralded as a suicide prevention program that changes lives and strengthens school culture from the inside out. It has been proven to:

  • Excite Students to Help Others
  • Build Connections Across Campus
  • Inspire Personal & Relational Growth

SEL Lesson Plans

All of the SEL lesson plans in the RISING UP: Coaching Program were developed to help with the social-emotional needs of students. Specific lessons that our peer mentors teach include:

  • The Power of Building Relationships & Understanding Self
  • The Importance of Decision-Making & Goal Setting Skills
  • The Joy of Career & Family Exploration
  • The Impact of Both Positive & Negative Choices
  • The Strength of Overcoming Adversity & Building Resilience


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Trainer Certification Available

In addition to our student training, we also offer a Trainer Certification Course for schools, districts, or organizations that want to implement the mentoring curriculum on a wider level. This interactive workshop will teach all attendees the importance of peer-to-peer programming and the philosophy behind our  social-emotional curriculum. The training includes an overview of the program, a hands-on explanation of the lesson plans, and in-depth insight into how to build resilient students.


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Change the dynamics in the classroom.  Use peer leaders to help extend guidance efforts and motivate students.


Anti-Bully Solution

Change the language around bullying.  Teach students how to start finding growth in adversity and conflict.


Target Audience

Specifically designed for middle and high school aged audiences.  Ideal for 6th grade or 9th grade transition issues.



Extend the reach of your guidance program.  Train 20-30 students to reach 100’s across the course of the semester.

RISING UP SEL Curriculum for Peer-to-Peer Programming

Social-Emotional Learning Throughout All Grade Levels

Social and emotional learning are critical and should be an educational focus at all grade levels. Students at every grade level can experience bullying, academic downfalls, emotional struggles, and lack of self or social awareness that can negatively affect students, their peers, and staff. Hundreds of studies have shown that effective SEL curriculums can start as early as kindergarten and should continue throughout high school to develop and practice social and emotional skills.

Why Should SEL Be a Part of My School?

More than two decades of educational research shows that implementing an evidence-based SEL program provides students with improvement in multiple areas of their lives. Below are some of the benefits that students, schools, and society receive from SEL program inclusion in schools.

Academic Benefits of SEL programs

The academic benefits of SEL programs are clear to see in the academic performance data. Multiple studies show an increase in student academic performance by 11 – 17% (depending on the individual study). This translates to higher student grades and improved performance on standardized tests.

Plus, data collected in follow-up research shows that the improvements are sustainable long-term with measurable impacts seen up to 18 years after the completion of initial SEL programs. 

Emotional Benefits of SEL Programs

Students that participate in SEL programs learn and develop emotional skills that help them cope with and manage emotions with greater understanding and control than students that do not participate in SEL training. These behavioral improvements can result in a better learning environment that affects all students in the classroom. A 2011 study shows that social and emotional learning programs reduced aggression, reduced classroom disturbances and conduct problems, reduced emotional distress among students, increased helping behaviors in school and improved positive attitudes toward self and others. 

Community Benefits of SEL programs

The school-wide and community benefits of Social-Emotional Learning can be seen in the long-term effects of improved citizenship. In fact, the economic value of SEL programs is calculated to be a 11:1 return on every dollar invested. Below are some of the effects that correlate with a student’s participation in an SEL program:

Why is it the school’s responsibility to teach SEL Skills?

A school-wide SEL program brings students together and provides them with the social and emotional tools necessary to be successful and a safe space to practice their skills. With SEL program, students of varying backgrounds, economic statuses, emotional states, and academic abilities can gain knowledge and social skills that result in better academic performance and a stronger school culture.

Some parents lack the proper understanding or knowledge to teach their children effective social skills and emotional coping techniques. Therefore, some students find it much harder to navigate through their own emotions and can find themselves struggling academically, socially, or emotionally.

RISING UP School Counselor Training

Building Community in the Classroom

Effective SEL programs can thrive within a classroom setting by creating a direct link to traditional academic work. Lesson plans easily blend with SEL, encouraging students to utilize these skills throughout their lives. Connecting students to each other and their communities is an essential element in SEL curriculum programs. Implementing SEL programs is an effective way to connect and engage students with their community while also giving them a sense of safety and security in their environment. Community involvement promotes teamwork, accountability, and a natural willingness to support others.

Promoting Empathy in the Classroom 

Students can learn to communicate, actively listen, cooperate, and handle school conflicts through an SEL curriculum. SEL programs will offer a variety of tools to help students learn to show empathy. These tools focus on the mind-body relationship and include mindfulness teachings, promoting self-awareness, and game-based behavior exercises. Equipping students and staff with the ability to express empathy will lower stress and enhance the well-being of everyone. Programs should focus on character development skills, such as honesty, forgiveness, and patience. 

Diversity and Inclusion 

Focusing on diversity in a school setting will produce more inclusive and accepting future generations. These types of programs can focus on perceived stereotypes, prejudice awareness, and inclusion. Before students can break down prejudice, the staff must break down prejudice. Staff are first encouraged to recognize their own biases and eliminate them using self-reflection and team-building exercises. When staff learn how to handle diversity issues, they will be better equipped to teach about diversity and promote awareness and inclusion.

Bullying Prevention

Schools have been battling the topic of bullying prevention for a long time. SEL curriculum programs have collected solutions proven to successfully lower rates of bullying at school. The focus is on safety and respect. All students deserve to feel safe at school. When students feel safe they show increased academic performance. There are many different kinds of bullying, and SEL curriculum programs help identify, inform and provide a solution to each. When adults know how to respond appropriately and consistently, they send the message that bullying behavior is unacceptable, and research shows this can stop these behaviors over time.

Motivating Youth to Strive for Success 

Finally, SEL programs should focus on preparing students for future success. In competitive classroom environments, academics are perceived as everything, and students often ignore their emotional well-being, to accomplish academic goals or meet the expectations of parents and peers. But grades aren’t everything. In fact a recent study showed that, 71% of employers say they value emotional intelligence more than IQ.  Practicing highly employable emotional intelligence skills will prepare students for their future careers.

Improved Emotional Intelligence

Proactively using emotional intelligence to navigate task and relationships is one of the goals of SEL programs. For many students, keeping in touch with negative emotions is difficult. Balancing these feelings and incorporating other SEL skills will teach students that negative emotions are completely normal, and it’s healthy to recognize these emotions and deal with them rather than enabling them to manifest in negative ways. As this mental maturity blossoms, students who are keen on self-awareness greatly influence the people around them. This kind of influence creates a secure, positive, and motivating environment overall.

Improved Decision Making Ability

Students have to make several decisions daily – whether they involve academics, life changes, or simple activities, it’s essential to keep in mind how these decisions can affect priorities, all while taking accountability for them. These skills also push students into becoming self-reliant, accountable, emotionally resilient, and willing to understand the depth of their feelings rather than cast them aside. This dramatically influences a student’s well-being and happiness.

Building Your School’s Culture Through SEL Curriculum

Focusing on social and emotional learning will benefit the students, the teachers, and the future of our schools. Understanding how SEL can apply to each student, no matter their background or academic skill, is essential to implementing a successful curriculum.

Teachers and Administrators Want More SEL Education

A recent survey of teachers showed that 93% of teachers want a more significant focus on SEL in their school’s curriculum (CASEL). These teachers are calling for SEL programs because they believe that the teachable skills and techniques included in SEL programs should be a priority. Unfortunately, many teachers lack the guidance, resources, training, and support needed to effectively implement SEL programs on their own. As a result, professional development training for teachers is essential to increasing the access to effective SEL education for students.

Professional Development for Teachers

SEL programs start at the root of education: teachers. Showing vulnerability with students allows them to better connect, making students more likely to ask questions and be vulnerable in return. While the goal is to help students, SEL professional development programs develop the educator. Staff need to have their social and emotional needs met alongside the students. A teacher cannot be a proper mentor without first developing their own skills to develop emotionally and socially. Successful SEL professional development programs will continuously offer staff resources to cater to their social and emotional well-being.

Student Development

Staff should meet with students individually more often and create an education plan that is uniquely beneficial to each student. SEL programs promote development in both group and individual settings. Students are encouraged to exercise self-esteem and self-management, which prepare them to manage themselves more efficiently after school. Staff members become mentors in an SEL program rather than relying on hard discipline tactics.

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How to Get Started with SEL Curriculum Programs​

Ready to see the social, emotional, and academic success an SEL curriculum program can provide? Contact TEEN TRUTH to implement the best social and emotional learning program for your school.

What Should I Consider When Evaluating SEL Programs?  

When considering which SEL program is suitable for your school or district, first consider the current needs in your community. Take a look at different programs to determine which approach fits your community and school.

The best SEL curriculum will offer support for staff and students throughout the entire process. Ensure the program you choose offers a wide variety of resources such as follow-ups and educational growth opportunities to both students and staff outside of school. Below are some of the other things to consider when choosing the best SEL program for your students and teachers.

SEL encourages healthy relationships between students and staff and builds social and emotional skills that can last a lifetime. The SEL curriculum should be easy to implement in the classroom and able to meet students where they are on the emotional and social spectrum. With an effective program each student can gain incredible knowledge from social-emotional learning.

SEL Curriculum Questions To Consider

The social-emotional topics covered, lesson plans and content delivery styles will be different for each SEL program.  As a result, there are several questions to consider while evaluating potential curriculums to use for your school.

  • How will students learn and engage with the materials?
  • Will this program help students achieve their goals and objectives?
  • Does this program require additional resources?
  • When is this program supposed to be included in the school calendar?
  • Is this program evidence-based?
  • How easy is this program to administer and manage?
  • Who is responsible for managing, coordinating, and overseeing the program?
  • How much time is required for this program?
  • What grades are supported by the program and is it differentiated?
  • Is there a way to incorporate and involved the larger community?
  • Do educators and teachers need additional training?
  • How do we measure program success and student growth?
  • What materials are included with the program for students and staff?
  • What instructional methods are used within the program?
  • Are there support resources for our teachers and staff?

TEEN TRUTH’s social-emotional learning experts would be happy to schedule a free consultation to discuss the RISING UP SEL curriculum and answer any of your questions.  

How To Implement Social-Emotional Learning

Implementing an SEL curriculum can be easy when you work with an experienced SEL program that offers detailed instructions and on-going support. Fully understanding the school’s culture, assessing students’ shared values, preparing faculty to teach SEL, and connecting with students with peer-to-peer coaching are giant steps toward successfully implementing an SEL curriculum.

Contact TEEN TRUTH today for more information about the best way to implement an SEL curriculum for your school. We look forward to helping you improve your school culture!

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