The purpose of the study was to examine how teachers teach Social Emotional Learning (SEL) to Latino students in transitional kindergarten through second grade. Latino students experience academic and emotional challenges due to parental education, language barriers, cultural difference, environmental challenges, and poverty. Integrating SEL into the classroom environment can be beneficial for Latino students to meet academic, social, and emotional development. A review of the literature supports that SEL can be a methodology to integrate into the school or classroom environments which support Latino achievement. As such, the classroom instructor is the critical participator in integrating SEL into the classroom environment. Through 15 semi-structured interviews, instructors who are experts in the fields of transitional kindergarten through second grade were interviewed. The data was gathered, coded, and thematically analyzed to find themes and phrases representing the best practices instructors integrate to meet Latino students' academic success. Based on the analysis of best practices from the participants along with the literature review, a training model was created for instructors to teach them how to integrate SEL into the classroom.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Hispanic Americans--Students; Hispanic Americans--Education, Elementary; Social learning

Date of Award


School Affiliation

Graduate School of Education and Psychology



Degree Type


Degree Name


Faculty Advisor

Gabriella Miramontes