Peace-building stories are stories that build hope and peace in hearts and minds and are meant to be shared especially with children. The story themes reflect upon the inherent structural inequalities and rather than perpetuating cynicism, fear or despair they purposefully re-focus attention upon building hope and introduce nonviolent, peaceful processes by offering a simple means for the creation of imaginative, nonviolent, collective solutions. One story, Donald the Drake, has been written in response to the uncertainty about the future of democratic processes within the United States and the consequential impact upon world peace. It focusses attention upon exploring how citizens can bring out the best in their elected leaders in peaceful, nonviolent ways instead of allowing fear to dictate thinking and action.
Peace educator Susan Gelber Cannon hosts a virtual Diversity Book Club on her blog where she summarizes books and provides classroom applications and resources for teachers interested in building welcoming and inclusive environments in their classrooms and schools. This particular session explores Blindspot: Hidden Biases of Good People, a book of particular relevance to the Global Campaign for Peace Education and International Institute on Peace Education’s call for campus teach-ins on identity-based violence.
The Gandhi King Season for Nonviolence commences on January 30 and marks the 64 calendar days between the memorial anniversary of the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi and that of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. on April 4.
Since the election, student protests across the country against bigotry and injustice have been inspiring. Now students need the opportunity to learn the history of people’s movements in order to deepen their protests into organizing that can win real change. To help introduce a history of resistance to injustice, Teaching for Change has created Resistance 101, a lesson for middle and high school classes to use for Inauguration Day Teach-Ins and beyond to #TeachResistance.
#TrumpSyllabusK12 is a compilation of lesson plans written by and for K-12th grade teachers (and college educators) for teaching about the 2016 presidential campaign; about resistance and revolution; about white privilege and white supremacy; about state-sanctioned violence and sanctuary classrooms; about fake news and Facebook; and, about freedom and justice. It is designed to transform our classrooms into liberated nonsexist nonmisogynistic anti-racist anti-classist spaces without any boundaries or borders. It is meant to liberate and free our students by providing them with lesson plans to challenge them to become global critical thinkers.
The NYC Stands with Standing Rock Collective developed a syllabus project useful for educators and activists seeking to understand the historical issues of indigenous people’s struggle for social, cultural and ecological justice arising from the current movement to resist the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline.
With this posting the Global Campaign for Peace Education begins a series on “Disarmament Education for Global Citizenship.” Each posting will address a concept, transition strategy, nonviolent global institution or civil society initiative that could be a practical component of a disarmed world.
We start with this video on Unarmed Civilian Protection, a civil society initiative undertaken by the Nonviolent Peace Force in various conflict areas of the world, similar to actions undertaken by various non-governmental organizations. We view it as a possible component of a preferred future global security system that actually functions now in the present highly armed, excessively violent security system.
Campus Election Engagement Project (CEEP) is a national nonpartisan project that helps America’s colleges and universities motivate their 20 million students to register, volunteer in campaigns, educate themselves, and turn out at the polls. They focus on how administrators, faculty, staff, and student leaders can help engage students, and they’re now engaging schools for the 2016 elections.
The International Center on Nonviolent Conflict is launching its first ever grant program for high school educators from around the world to support development and implementation of the civil resistance education for high school students in 2017 and beyond. Application deadline: October 9, 2016.
This peace studies glossary was developed by Joanie Connors. Peace Studies’ courses are challenging to students who have been brought up with limited worldviews and right/wrong thinking. Glossaries are important for students of varying backgrounds to be on the same page in studying any subject, but they are especially needed for courses that challenge status quo thinking. In addition to covering generally accepted terms in peace and conflict resolution, this glossary includes the systems perspective and interpersonal science.
UNESCO’s Teacher Guide on the Prevention of Violent Extremism provides practical tips to educators seeking guidance on how to discuss the subject in classrooms. The Guide was developed within the framework of UNESCO’s work on Global Citizenship Education and in response to the request of UNESCO’s Member States for assistance in strengthening their education sector responses to violent extremism.
The main purpose of this training manual, developed by Loreta Castro for the Global Partnership for the Prevention of Armed Conflict (GPPAC), is to introduce educators to the fundamentals of Peace Education, including its basic knowledge base as well as the skills and values that need to be cultivated.
Betty Reardon reviews Abigail Disney’s newest documentary “The Armor of Light.” Brilliantly executed, ethically instructive and politically relevant, the film is an important contribution to the current societal conversation debating the American gun culture, its daily shootings, and the growing conflation of weapons with personal and family security that characterize it. The regularity of gun deaths that takes lives of all ages and races, but disproportionately of young black men makes the persistence of racism imbedded in our social order readily evident. Less noted, brought to public attention only in sensational cases or crimes that bring the active attention of feminists and women’s rights activists, are the multiple incidents of domestic violence escalating beyond physical abuse to murder, when the abuser is in possession of a firearm. Children bringing loaded guns to school or dying by accidental shootings, usually in their own homes is more frequently reported. Easy access to guns also increases the possibility that death or serious injury in the commission of crimes that might not otherwise have had lethal consequences.
Clearly the prevalence of handguns and private possession of assault weapons poses a problem of such proportions as to be a subject of significant attention on the teaching agendas of all peace educators. Disney’s film is a powerful pedagogic tool for addressing this agenda item. It vividly illustrates the dire national need to confront the problem of weapons in American society and documents the struggle to fulfill that need by three individuals of diverse backgrounds who share strongly held beliefs in the value of human life.
CND (Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament) campaigns non-violently to achieve British nuclear disarmament and to secure an international Nuclear Weapons Convention. CND Peace Education empowers young people with knowledge on peace and nuclear issues and offers a range of free teaching resources with full curriculum links and lesson plans. They also provide free teacher training and continuing professional development workshops. Here is an overview of some of the resources they provide.
Films & documentaries on human rights, social justice, civil rights, non-violent resistance, war and peace
Principle Pictures founder and GroundTruth Films Director Beth Murphy has aggregated a list of films (narratives and documentaries) focused on human rights, social justice, civil rights, non-violent resistance, war and peace. These films can be sorted by subject/theme, country/event. Also included are links to watch/purchase the films and to educational materials to facilitate classroom and community discussion.