A school-wide program for 6-8th grade students
By the time they are in middle school, adolescents have learned a variety of responses to conflict from observing and interacting with family and friends. This process usually takes place without much reflection or conscious awareness. Learning how to deal with frustration and anger, communicate effectively, and respect others’ viewpoints are topics that often are not “front and center” for most middle school students. The Working Together to Resolve Conflict curriculum and Peer Mediation Training manual provide a constructive focus on conflict, introduce helpful ways to respond, and provide students with positive experiences as they learn how to get along with others.
Our curriculum consists of the following five units:
- Understanding Conflict
- Effective Communication
- Understanding Anger
- Handling Anger
- Peer Mediation
In each of the first four units, there are three lessons (each designed for approximately one class period) with progressive, interrelated content. The fifth unit, Peer Mediation, contains one lesson designed to introduce students to the concept of mediation and what they might expect if they sought mediation at their school.
The curriculum can be presented by (a) teaching the lessons within each unit consecutively or (b) teaching one lesson from each unit to introduce each topic area to students within a group of five lessons.
Each lesson includes suggestions for teacher-led activities, student practice activities, and Powerpoint slides. Lessons are “teacher friendly” and can be expanded or condensed, depending on time available.