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Lesson Plans


Conflict Resolution Curriculum ~long

[ Thread ][ Subject ][ Author ][ Date ]
S. Henneborn (heneborn)
Wed, 21 Apr 1999 23:46:59 -0600


In reply to the question ,"Is any school district teaching anti hate
curriculum?" About 10 years ago my school district started training all
staff, including bus drivers, in a peacemaking curriculum. As we all became
skilled in working through the steps for conflict resolution the atmosphere
slowly changed ... Staff to staff, staff to student, and student to student.
I think I posted this information already but I'll tell this story again. My
husband and I had an ongoing argument for many years. Each time a situation
came up we would both come to a boiling point and just couldn't ever get past
it. We would table it and go about our business until it would raise its head
again! One day I decided to put us through the simple steps. 1) each party
states their view of the problem .. Facts and feelings and opinions 2) Each
party states what they are hearing the opposing party say. 3) Each party has a
chance to validate or refute what they hear. 4 they have to come to some
agreement for a resolution that both parties can live with. If the agreement
breaks down there are further steps. This is very simple explanation and
there are lessons in the curriculum to reinforce the process. Well My husband
and I got to the 3rd step and both of us realized that we had never heard what
the other was trying to say. After we were able to clarify the problem we
could reach agreement and it left our lives so completely that neither of us
can remember what the disagreement was about that festered in our relationship
for so many years. Now we routinely use "What do you hear me saying?" when we
have a serious discussion.

In school the children who are having a conflict go off and run through the
steps and come back to report the agreement. I think this works better than
having a teacher mediate. The kids don't have a teacher to "play to" and are
just face to face with each other. Of course very disturbed kids usually come
to a point that they need a mediator to guide the steps. We have experienced
some very angry kids in our school. We have two now who are very quietly angry
and I can easily imagine them coming on with violence when they are older if
we don't find the hook. Both have very concerned parents and nurturing
teachers but it isn't getting better! We need some some heavy duty
intervention but until something violent occurs they won't get that help. Our
district has cut many programs in the last 4 years so now everything is looked
at in terms of immediate cost!
Sharon
NJ
PS( Marc ~ Big of you to write your last post!)