CosmoKidz in Louisiana: An inspiring first year
From 2014 to 2016 the CMM Institute and the Kettering Foundation partnered to test the effectiveness of CosmoKidz and modified deliberations in an economically and socially challenged school in Oracle, Arizona. The current research is replicating what was done in Arizona but now in the Deep South of Hammond, Louisiana.
CosmoKidz is being used in all kindergarten through second-grade classes in two schools; one is in rural Tickfaw and the other in urban Hammond. Both schools are k-8 and both are economically and socially challenged. The Principal of the urban school says this about her school:
“The majority of our zone is comprised of the two largest projects in Hammond. The school is currently at 93% free and reduced lunch. Many students come from a home environment that is not conducive to learning. They are stressed and often angry. They lack reasoning, good decision- making and communication skills. This is where the SOAR program comes in. It has been instrumental in teaching our students these invaluable life-long skills.”
In all, 230 students participated in the CosmoKidz program, engaging in 10 minutes of daily conversation about a CosmoKidz topic, with frequent reminders about SOARING behavior from their teachers. We collected questionnaire, observational and report data over the first year of the program and can readily report that five, six and seven-year old students enjoyed and looked forward to their daily conversations about their social worlds.
Furthermore, the students demonstrated genuine progress in their ability to enact SOARing behaviors (Sense what’s around you; Open your hands to help others; Act with kindness; Respect other people). Parents also reported a significant difference in their child’s behavior. In particular, many parents said that their child is more helpful at home, listens better, shows more kindness to siblings and other members of the family, etc. The second year of the research in Hammond will begin in August.
To view the details of the 2017-2018 research findings, see CosmoKidz Research.