Restorative Practices: Fostering Healthy Relationships and Promoting Positive Discipline in Schools

As educators partner with districts to move away from zero tolerance discipline policies and ramp up e orts to strengthen safe and supportive schools, address con ict, improve school climate, and build a positive school culture that students are connected to, many campuses are looking to implement alternative, restorative approaches.

This toolkit was developed to illustrate how restorative strategies can be seamlessly integrated into the classroom, curriculum, and culture of schools. It de nes what restorative practices are, explains why they are a transformational tool for fostering healthy relationships in schools and shows how they can be useful processes for students, educators, and learning communities.

This toolkit is intended for all educators who support the growth and health of students in schools. It is an introduction for those new to the concepts and will help support and enhance the work of teachers already implementing these practices in their classrooms. e toolkit includes digestible models, frameworks, and action steps for school-wide implementation, accompanied by guiding questions to support re ection for practitioners looking to make restorative methods part of the fabric of daily life in schools. It also recognizes the signi cant role all education professionals play in maintaining a school community that models respectful, trusting, and caring relationships.

Peacebuilding Toolkit for Educators – High School Edition

The Peacebuilding Toolkit for Educators is designed to support the work of educators as peacebuilders. It is a resource developed by and for educators, to help introduce peacebuilding themes and skills into the classroom. The Toolkit can help develop students’ understanding of, and interest in, global peacebuilding, and develop their skills and capacities to act as peacebuilders. It can help teachers develop their own understanding of key concepts and skills, and enhance their capacity to teach about global peacebuilding themes and issues. There are two volumes of the toolkit––one for middle school and one for high school.

The High School Edition of the toolkit is designed for a general audience of students in grades 9–12 (ages 14–18). The content can be modified for older students and some of the content can be modified for younger students. High school students are at an ideal stage to talk about peace and conflict, to view the world as an evolving system of relationships, and to prepare themselves to make a positive impact through their choices and actions today and in the future.

The lessons have been developed with great detail to be useful for educators who are new to the methods employed that engage students in experiential learning and critical thinking. The toolkit is organized around basic themes within the field of international conflict management.
Theme 1: Conflict is an inherent part of the human condition.
Theme 2: Violent conflict can be prevented.
Theme 3: There are many ways to be a peacebuilder.

The 15 lessons in the toolkit are interactive and encourage students to work collaboratively to understand concepts and solve problems. The lessons are designed to be detailed enough for a new teacher or a teacher unfamiliar with interactive or experiential methods to pick them up and use them as intended.

Peacebuilding Toolkit for Educators – Middle School Edition

The Peacebuilding Toolkit for Educators is designed to support the work of educators as peacebuilders. It is a resource developed by and for educators, to help introduce peacebuilding themes and skills into the classroom. The Toolkit can help develop students’ understanding of, and interest in, global peacebuilding, and develop their skills and capacities to act as peacebuilders. It can help teachers develop their own understanding of key concepts and skills, and enhance their capacity to teach about global peacebuilding themes and issues. There are two volumes of the toolkit––one for middle school and one for high school.

The Middle School Edition of the toolkit is designed for a general audience of students in grades 6–8. The content can be modified for older students and some of the content can be modified for younger students. Engaging young audiences in conversations about peace and conflict is important. It is the authors’ hope that young students will engage in these topics and continue to reflect on them as they progress through high school and move into the world. The lessons have been developed with great detail to be useful for educators who are new to the methods employed that engage students in experiential learning and critical thinking. The lessons are intended for traditional and alternative education settings. The toolkit is organized around basic themes within the field of international conflict management.
Theme 1: Conflict is an inherent part of the human condition.
Theme 2: Violent conflict can be prevented.
Theme 3: There are many ways to be a peacebuilder.

The 15 lessons in the toolkit are interactive and encourage students to work collaboratively to understand concepts and solve problems. The lessons are designed to be detailed enough for a new teacher or a teacher unfamiliar with interactive or experiential methods to pick them up and use them as intended. The middle school lessons include teacher direction, guided practice, and independent practice.

Training Module for Education for a Culture of Peace

This module, released in January 1999, is based on experiences working in Sierra-Leone. It was written to provide some relevant information on practical ideas to enhance women’s traditional conflict resolution and mediating practices since they are also stakeholders in conflict situations but are often left out in conflict resolution initiatives.
The material is divided into 8 units.
Unit 1 – Understanding Gender and distinguishing between Gender and Sex Roles
Unit 2 – Trauma Healing and Counselling
Unit 3 – Conflict Resolution
Unit 4 – Gender Awareness in Conflict Resolution/Reconciliation, Concept of Repentance and Forgiveness
Unit 5 – Mediation and the role of Women in Peace Building within the Family, the Community, the School and the total Social Environment
Unit 6 – Raising Awareness of Gender Issues and Peace Building through the use of Drama
Unit 7 – Understanding Basic Rights and Freedom and their Limitations
Unit 8 – Practices for sustaining Peace after the Resolution of Conflict/Institutionalizing transformation

Positive approaches to discipline scenario

Web-based interactive scenario which “demonstrates the differences between positive discipline and punishment. Discipline techniques focus on what we want the child to learn and what the child is capable of learning. Punishment, on the other hand, focuses on misbehavior and may do little or nothing to help a child behave better in the future. The differences between positive discipline and punishment are great, as well as the lessons learned that result from the technique used.”

Restorative conferences resource kit

60-page pdf resource kit for presenting restorative conferences which “(involves the gathering of those who have a stake in a particular troublesome situation, to talk together to find ways of making amends) … the purpose of these conferences is to discuss what the problem might be and to pool ideas about what might be most helpful from here, for all concerned, from this pool of ideas should emerge a plan for restoration of the situation… These Conferences offer a helpful step forward by involving a range of participants who both contribute to and are affected by the situation at hand, they promote a spirit of open and direct conversation and add a human touch to the process of addressing transgressions… this Resource Kit represents the culmination of 18 months of work by a group whose links are with restorative justice, Maori protocols, and counsellor training with narrative therapy at the University of Waikato.” Includes bibliography

Gender based violence: Challenging norms, building capacities, promising practices, creating peace

16-page Powerpoint presentation given at the Second International Summit on Conflict Resolution Education which “provide[s] a new context for prevention of intimate partner, domestic and sexual violence, participants will build their capacity to engage in social change work, learn current promising and best practices for intimate partner and sexual violence prevention.”

Extending campus conflict resolution efforts beyond the mediation table

Pdf article from Conflict Management in Higher Education Report, Volume 2, Number 3, (May 2002), which “describes creative responses to campus conflict that don’t rely on mediation as their central strategy or approach, providing links to online examples when available.”

Being an ally

Pdf document for students outlining steps and sample phrases to help diffuse bullying incidents.