Words Work

Words Work is a curriculum of ten 45-minute lessons related to listening, problem-solving, intercultural communication, and much more. The ABA Section of Dispute Resolution worked with two curriculum partners, CRU Institute and AFSC’s HIP program, through the funding support of the JAMS Foundation to develop this curriculum.


Words Work is a simple, practical, and user-friendly supplement to after school programs serving middle-school-aged children. The Words Work curriculum teaches kids to use communication skills to prevent and manage conflict.

Words Work is a turn-key curriculum educators and advocates can use to build leadership, relationship, and communication skills. With these skills, youth will become comfortable with recognizing and effectively resolving conflict in the situations they face at school, at home, and in the community.

The Words Work curriculum is geared toward youth in grades six to eight. Through ten 45-minute sessions, educators will guide youth through interactive lessons that focus on relationships, problem-solving, communication, and leadership skill-building. Two leading conflict resolution education organizations, the Conflict Resolution Unlimited Institute and the Middle Atlantic Region of American Friends Service — Help Increase the Peace Program, provided the lessons that are the foundation of the curriculum.

Through funding by the JAMS Foundation, the curriculum is available free of charge.

Please Note: The link below will lead you to the ABA’s site, where you can add this to your cart, then create an account, then check out. This will place a copy in the “Downloads” folder of your account–then you download the large (12Mb!) pdf:


The manual includes the facilitators’ guidebook, all the exercises and worksheets, a certificate template, and a helpful set of short “teaching notes” to help trainers recall the main points of each lesson. Please know that we ask you to register so we can track how many visitors download the curriculum, and we may follow up with an email survey to find out your experiences with it.

Conflict Transformation Education for At-Risk Youth: Connecting With Kids

Teaching conflict skills to adolescents can be challenging enough without adding the difficulties facing at-risk youth. Through grant funding and community collaboration, the UND Conflict Resolution Center developed a training protocol, training sessions and materials to teach conflict management skills, healthy decision making and non-violent choices to the at-risk youth population. The speakers will share their insights for what makes the program successful, what the kids say about their experience and what challenges exist.

Proposals in Civic Education and Conflict Resolution in Schools in Columbia

Colombia es un país con muchas cosas positivas. Sin embargo, existe una violencia social generalizada que también se manifi¬esta de múltiples formas en la escuela y en la universidad. Esta conferencia pretende brindar un mayor conocimiento de esta problemática en el departamento de Santander, región noreste de Colombia. Igual-mente, pretende mostrar las investigaciones y propuestas que se están construyendo para hacer de las escuelas y las universi¬dades de Santander territorios de paz.

Colombia is a country with many positive things. However, there is widespread social violence that is manifested in many ways at schools and colleges. This session aims to provide a better understanding of this problem in the region of Santander (Departamento de Santander) northeastern Colombia. Also it aims to show the research and proposals that are being developed to make schools and universities Santander territories for peace.

Columbine Facilitation: Lessons Learned

This presentation reviews the importance and the purpose of facilitation along with the lessons learned following the Columbine High School shootings. It also includes an in depth look at the benefits and the administration process of facilitation.

Reforming Special Education

This presentation illustrates the topic of reforming special education and fostering collaborative problem solving skills in complex D. C. school settings. Included are conflict resolution case studies and an example of an integrated curriculum for special educators.

Peer Mediation Creating Life Long Conflict Practitioners

This presentation by Mary Alice Smallbone and J. Frank Rizzo reviewed the creation of Life long Conflict Practitioners and how Peer Mediation can help. The presentation describes how to implement an effective peer mediation program and depicts a sample program, “Amigos in Mediation” (AIM) Peer Mediation Program.

International and National Conflict Resolution Education (CRE)

A presentation reviewing national and international conflict resolution education policy and program development trends, presented as part of the mini-plenary session entitled “A World View of Conflict Resolution Education/Peace Education.”

CRETE Web Resources

Bill Warters’ portion of a panel presentation entitled “No Teacher Left Behind: Reaching Out with Conflict Resolution Education in Teacher Education.” As the program description indicated, “A critical support for CRETE is the web site www.creducation.org. The web designer and master will introduce the site and discuss how it helps us reach out with CRE to all teachers and educators around the globe.”

CRE and CRETE Project History

Slides from Jennifer Batton’s portion of the panel presentation entitled “No Teacher Left Behind: Reaching Out with Conflict Resolution Education in Teacher Education” which was designed to introduce participants to the Conflict Resolution Education in Teacher Education (CRETE) project, a national collaborative (funded by the JAMS Foundation and U.S. Department of Education) to build conflict resolution education knowledge in pre-service and in-service teachers.

CRE Progress and Challenges – ACR Mini-Plenary

This presentation by Tricia Jones was part of a larger panel session entitled “A World View of Conflict Resolution Education/Peace Education.” Dr. Jones’ portion explores the questions – What are the major challenges we face in continuing the CRE/PE work? How do concerns about efficacy, extant research, infrastructures, and policy influence suggest directions for a future action agenda for PE/CRE work?