October 2011 Stop Bullying – Speak Up Comic Challenge

As part of Bullying Prevention Month, Bitstrips for Schools is teaming up with the Cartoon Network to host a comic-based challenge on preventing bullying. The event is being called the “Stop Bullying: Speak Up Comic Challenge.” As Suzie Boss reports in a blog post over at Edutopia,

Each week during the campaign, Bitstrips will release a new comic template that sets up a different situation, such as cyberbullying or cell phone bullying. Students start by using online drawing tools to create their own avatar, which is dropped into the template as the “star” of the strip. Students then respond to the situation by finishing the comic strip with dialogue, new characters, or special effects. Different activities might cast students’ avatars in the role of bystander, victim, or even a bully who has to face the consequences.

The initiative is geared toward students in grades 3-8.

3rd Edition Conflict Resolution Education Activity Calendar now available

We are pleased to announce that the 3rd Edition of the Conflict Resolution Education Activity Calendar (starting with September 2011) is now available. A heartfelt thanks goes out to our talented volunteer editorial team from MappingChange.com and the Conflict Resolution Program at the University of Delaware. You can view the 2011-2012 calendar online or grab a smartboard-friendly pdf copy with active weblinks.

Hard copies can be ordered online from the Association for Conflict Resolution or by using this form. Individuals and schools and youth serving organizations qualify to receive free calendars (1 per individual or 5-pack for educational orgs) and everyone is invited to sponsor the distribution of calendars by donating $15 for a 5-pack to be sent to yourself or a deserving organization. Help “Spread the CREd” today!
calendar cover image

2011 K-12 Poetry Contest Theme – Demonstrating Respect

The Conflict Resolution Day annual poetry contest theme has been set for the 2011 contest held during October.
Details below.

Participate in the third annual Conflict Resolution Day Poetry Contest!
The Conflict Resolution Day Poetry Contest is Accepting Entries Oct 1 – Nov 1, 2011
Students are invited to submit a poem on the theme:
“Demonstrating Respect – at home, in school, or in the community”

Examples may include:
– Gaining respect peacefully
– Showing consideration when we disagree
– Importance of respect
– Connecting peace and respect
– Peaceful conflict resolution when we are disrespected
– What it feels like to be respected

Win Cash Prizes!!!
Poems will be judged Prizes will be awarded in three Grade Categories 3-5th; 6-8th; and 9-12th
1st Place in each category wins $100
2nd Place in each category wins $75
All Poems must be submitted in English Maximum of 20 Lines

Full contest rules available at http://www.acrnet.org/crday or

U.S. Department of Education Invites Comments on School Bullying Law and Policy Plan

The U.S. Department of Education has published a plan to conduct case studies at 24 school sites across the nation to analyze bullying laws and policies.

The study will identify promising strategies and practices schools use to combat bullying and will examine how state legislative requirements influence policies, including ways that state and district policies facilitate or create challenges for effective implementation.

Comments are due by August 1, 2011, and may be submitted electronically to ICDocketMgr@ed.gov or mailed to the U.S. Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue, SW, LBJ, Washington, DC 20202–4537.

Senate is Briefed on Social-Emotional Learning as a Tool for Academic Success

On May 12th a Senate briefing was held to inform members of the US Senate (as well as other policy influencers) on the issues of social, emotional and character development. The collaboration included members of The National Association of School Psychologists, The Committee for Children, The National School Climate Center and The Character Education Partnership. The briefing, entitled “Enhancing Conditions for Student Learning and Academic Achievement through Social, Emotional, and Character Development,” was led by Linda McKay, one of the Character Education Partnership’s Board of Director.

A helpful summary of the topics addressed is available on the School Climate Blog hosted by The National School Climate Center.

Pre-order 2011-2012 CRE Teacher Calendars

The 3rd Edition of our popular wall calendar for teachers and youth workers is being developed now. Promote conflict resolution skills in your learning communities with the full-color 28-page wall calendar covering the school year (August 2011 through July 2012). Each month includes a full page of activities and educator tips to promote conflict resolution. The calendar’s date grid highlights significant holidays, conflict resolution events and peacemaker birthdays. CREducation.org also provides a pdf smartboard-friendly version with live web-links leading to additional information, videos and learning modules.

This announcement flyer serves as your chance to help support conflict resolution in education, gift others in your organization, and promote your own related initiatives. A business card sized space is provided on the back cover of the calendar so donors can paste or stamp a label promoting your organization. Resale of this non-profit calendar is not permitted. Delivery of the print calendars is scheduled for the last week of July.

The cost for advance orders of the 28-page full-color calendars is as follows if you can commit by June 30, 2011.
$2.00 each (on pre-orders of 25 or fewer calendars);
$1.75 each (on pre-orders of 26-100);
$1.50 each (on pre-orders of 100+)

To get a better feel for the product, you can take a look at last year’s calendar online here.

sample from last year

New Editors Selected for 3rd Edition CRE Activity Calendar

We are pleased to announce a new editorial team for the 3rd Edition of our popular Conflict Resolution Education Activity Calendar. Selected via a competitive application process, the 3rd Edition will be co-edited by Marina Piscolish (Hawaii, Mapping Change, LLC) and Kathy Wian (University of Delaware, Conflict Resolution Program) with support from Susan Young (Hawaii), Regina McCarthy (Pittsburgh, PA) and several others. The team will curate the content of the calendar, working with submissions from contributors (see submission form here) and newly developed content as needed. The theme for the 2011-2012 edition will include a focus on the relationship between conflict resolution practices and health and wellness.

Marina Piscolish was originally a secondary teacher of social studies, who later earned a doctorate in Education from University of Pittsburgh focused on critical democracy in school systems and in reform efforts. Upon moving to Delaware in 1993, she created the first CR Center at the University of Delaware, still in operation today. Originally called the Program on Conflict Resolution in Education, it later expanded to serve other sectors and dropped education from its title, while education remained a heavy focus of its work. Currently in private practice in Hawaii, Piscolish teaches Conflict Resolution for Educators at the University of Hawaii.

Kathy Wian is the Director of the Conflict Resolution Program (CRP) at the Institute for Public Administration at the University of Delaware. For the past 16 years, CRP has provided a variety of conflict resolution services to teachers, administrators, school boards, parents, advocates and students. They have conducted workshops focused on shared decision making, strategic change, peer mediation, conflict resolution, and collaborative meetings to name a few. CRP also manages Delaware’s statewide special education mediation program and the statewide IEP meeting facilitation program. More information on the Conflict Resolution Program that Wian directs is available online at http://www.ipa.udel.edu/crp/

Residential Summer Institute Fellowship for K-12 Educators – (July 25 – August 8, 2011)

Readers may be interested in this Residential Summer Institute Fellowship for K-12 Educators: “Journeys of Nonviolence: Gandhi and Chávez” – Ahimsa Center at Cal Poly Pomona, CA, USA (July 25 – August 8, 2011)

The fourth in a series on Education about Nonviolence, this Institute will focus on two major proponents of nonviolent action for social change: Mohandas K. Gandhi (1869-1948) and Cesar Chavez, (1927-1993). It will provide an extraordinary opportunity for educational leadership by integrating in school curricula the lessons based on critical understanding of Gandhi and Chavez, especially their respective journeys of nonviolence in seeking freedom and social justice. The Institute is open to all K-12 educators throughout the United States. Forty participants will be selected to receive residential fellowships. Application deadline: March 21, 2011.

Call for Submissions – Voice of Teachers journal special edition on Peace Education

Dear Colleagues,

You are invited to submit your research paper for possible inclusion in a special issue of the Voice of Teachers journal devoted to Peace Education. Peace education is the practice of teaching the knowledge, values, and skills necessary to promote peace at all levels, and we invite your submissions on any theme related to this topic.

The Voice of Teachers is an online, peer-reviewed journal designed to strengthen the fundamental connection between grassroots teacher professional development, world-class research, and big ideas. Overseen by a guest editor and a diverse group of peers, each issue addresses a theme of pressing importance to teachers. The Peace Education issue of the Voice of Teachers will be guest-edited by Toh Swee-Hin, a distinguished professor at the UN-mandated University for Peace in Costa Rica and UNESCO Peace Education Prize laureate (2000).

In keeping with the key peace education principles of embracing inclusivity, diversity and creativity, we encourage a wide variety of submissions from a wide variety of peace education practitioners, educators, writers, theorists, and researchers. Possible contributions include scholarly research and reports, professional development materials, lesson plans, personal reflections and narratives, creative writing, multimedia resources, book reviews, and visual art. Please keep in mind that your work will be reviewed using the scholarly peer review process.

If you are interested in submitting your work for possible inclusion in this upcoming issue of the Voice of Teachers, please use the following online form. The deadline to submit your work is January 31st, 2011. Please ensure that your submission does not include your name or professional affiliation.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me. We are looking forward to receiving your submissions.

Konrad Glogowski
Director of Programs

New Diverse Teaching Kit Offered About Bullying

A new teaching kit, named “Bullied” is now being offered via the Teaching Tolerance website at: http://www.tolerance.or/kit/bullied . The film (dvd) “Bullied” is a documentary that chronicles a student’s encounters at the mercy of anti-gay bullies. The kit, which is being offered for free, will be shipped beginning in mid-September. There is an electronic order form on the website. The site indicates it is possible to receive the film in time to use during National Bullying Prevention Month in your classroom (October 2010). The kit includes: the 40 minute documentary film, a two-part viewer’s guide including lesson plans and activities for staff for use in development and access to additional materials online. Please note that the package is designed to assist teachers, administrators and counselors create a safe environment and create an awareness about the issue for all students, not just those who are gay and lesbian. There is a limit of one kit per school.

Free 2010-2011 CRE Teacher’s Calendar now available

Good news – the 2nd Edition of the CRE Teacher’s Calendar has now been released. The 2010-2011 calendar, a cooperative project of ACR’s CR Day Committee, ACR’s Education Section and CRETE, provides activities, tips, and links to conflict resolution resources and significant calendar dates throughout the school year. Print versions will be distributed to teachers around the country and ACR will make a limited number of copies available for order via the web (details TBA).

cover of 2011 calendar

United Nations International Year of Youth

The United Nations has declared 12 August 2010 – 11 August 2011 as International Year of Youth: Dialogue and Mutual Understanding. This should provide some exciting the opportunities for those working in the area of youth and peacebuilding, and we encourage everyone to get involved.
More information will be posted on the United Nations youth website, http://www.un.org/esa/socdev/unyin/index.html

Interviews from CRETE Partners Meeting

The higher education institutional partners working with the CRETE project met in Austin at St. Edwards University March 4-5, 2010. I interviewed some of the folks in attendance and put together a podcast episode that provides a window into some of the many ways the CRETE program is being implemented. You can listen to the Conflict Learning Audio podcast online here, or subscribe via iTunes.

Darkness and Light in November 2009

Posted by Shawn McElroy on behalf of Loreta Navarro Castro, Center for peace education, Miriam College, Quezon City, Philippines

My November 2009 began in an upbeat mood. I attended two successive conferences in South Korea in the early part of the month.  The first conference focused on promoting interfaith understanding and the need to establish a Peace Education Center that can serve not only Korea but the Asian region as well.  The second conference considered various themes (restorative justice, evaluation, conflict resolution education and peace education) and several members of the GPPAC Peace Education Working Group served as resource persons.  (GPPAC stands for Global Partnership for the Prevention of Armed Conflict).  The full week in Korea was a happy time for me because both the conferences and the Peace Education Working Group meeting at the end of that week yielded fruitful results.

My hopeful mood continued when I returned to the Philippines.  We conducted a Peace Education Training Workshop for Educators in South East Asia.  There were 26 participants from seven countries in the region, Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar/Burma, Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam.

Five ministries of education were represented and this augurs well for the future mainstreaming of peace education in the region.  However, as the said participants were arriving in the Philippines, a gruesome crime was being committed in the Maguindanao province in the Southern Philippines.  At least 57 civilians were massacred in the morning of November 23, an incident that is now etched in our nation’s memory as the most brutal politically motivated violence committed in the country.  The massacre truly shocked and saddened us. (I prepared the draft of a Statement which was adopted as the official Miriam College Statement. Please see it below)

As the end of November approached, one thing became clear.  The barbaric violence turned into a wake up call or a moment of awakening for the whole nation.  There are now countless voices of protest, asking for an end to political warlordism, private armies, and the proliferation or firearms, as well as for the respect of human rights and the rule of law.

I hope that this dark November day would not be in vain. May it yield the kind of light that we seek, so that such an event will not happen again!

Opportunity to Help Develop New Program Degrees

I read about the great opportunity to assist in the creation of a “How to” manual on key topics in the development or expansion process for degree or certificate programs in Conflict, Peace or Justice Studies. The manual is a work in progress and is currently being shared electronically as a series of pdf downloads in this section of the website:

The piece is a working document and we are looking for contributions of Chapters for the manual. If you have direct experience in in topics such as: Credit vs. Non-credit courses, Strategies For Faculty Development, Career Options for Students, Developing a Traditional Academic Program- or any one of the topics listed in the article, please see the contributors guide (chapter outlines and descriptions) for additional information on how to contribute a Chapter at: