Available for Interviews: Nadine Levitt
Nadine Levitt is an education advocate, speaker, and the CEO & Founder of WURRLYedu, an educational technology platform. Nadine specializes in the social-emotional curriculum (SEL), and she is also the author of the children’s book, My Mama Says Inside Me Lives a Village.
What Nadine Levitt can say
Emotions and Academic Achievement:
There has been a tremendous focus on the declining academic achievement of students since the start of the pandemic, as well as a rise in issues relating to mental health and wellbeing. But the link between the two is not often talked about.
- Overwhelm is a great example that highlights this link. Overwhelm is that helpless feeling you get when other big emotions and stress responses become overbearing and are drowning out our nervous system so that you can no longer make sense of them. It completely shuts down our ability to problem solve and makes us reactive instead of responsive.
- In our recent teacher pilot, PD Reimagined, 100% of participating teachers and school leaders reported feeling overwhelmed in the last month. And students are feeling it too, with the pandemic only exacerbating what was already an alarming trend of increased anxiety levels and feelings of overwhelm in kids.
- Feelings like stress and anxiety are contagious. They can feed the stress levels of others around them. Especially when you are a leader of any kind.
- A focus on emotional intelligence is crucial if we want to interrupt this cycle. Before we are students, teachers, parents, school leaders, etc. we are human beings, with needs, emotions, beliefs, and values that influence our actions. Learning how our emotions work, and how they can be processed in a healthy way, is a foundational skill that affects every facet of our lives—from academic or professional achievement to the building of meaningful relationships, and even responsible decision making. If we can process our emotions and recognize emotional responses in others, we will be more adaptive problem solvers, build greater self-regulation skills and manage higher workloads better.
Academic achievement is important, but it is dependent on a level of emotional intelligence. They are linked, and when approached together can actually benefit each other. For example, as students start to reflect on improved academic outcomes, they build confidence and motivation to continue learning. Learning can be vulnerable and requires us to take risks and challenge ourselves, to self-regulate when we feel fear and awkwardness so that we don’t limit ourselves, but instead move through it.
Interview: Nadine Levitt
Nadine Levitt is a Swiss-born, German, Kiwi, American thought leader, speaker, and author who is passionate about education, especially focusing on child emotional wellness, social and emotional skill development using the Arts, and EdTech.
In 2015 she founded the technology company WURRLY, which also makes WURRLYedu—a leading music education solution being used in schools across 22 states. Nadine has authored two children´s books for social and emotional learning (Inside Me Lives a Village and Inside Me Lives a Superhero), initially developed as a tool to use with her own kids, to help them develop positive self-awareness, self-regulation skills, confidence, empathy, creativity, and self-expression. This quickly grew into a school program, with the development of a supporting curriculum and classroom resources, and toys and other children’s products that foster a healthy relationship with emotions.
As an education thought leader, Nadine Levitt gives keynote speeches around the world on the subjects of music education, social and emotional learning, and technology in classrooms.
Director of Public Relations
Success In Media, Inc.