Date of Award


Document Type

Action Research Project

Degree Name

Master of Arts in Education



First Advisor

Carol Knicker




A positive classroom and a positive school environment are needed to best support students, especially those students with major behavioral concerns. The implementation of the Second Step curriculum is one way to support positive student behavior. This study examined the impact of Second Step implementation methods on students’ emotion management skills. Peer-to-peer, small-group teacher intervention, and whole-group implementation groups in kindergarten and fifth-grade classrooms were studied. Data collection methods included observational checklists, a district created formative assessment, and pre- and post-tests created by the Second Step curriculum. The data collected indicated that many students had an accurate understanding of social-emotional learning skills, but they did not implement emotion-management skills consistently. However, students participating in peer-to-peer emotion management teaching were more self-aware and applied emotion management skills more frequently when compared to students receiving small-group and whole-group instruction. Based on these results, peer-to-peer instruction methods are recommended to strengthen Second Step emotion management skill instruction and student self-awareness.

Included in

Education Commons