May 19th, 2020

WPDI.org Conflict Resolution for Middle Schools

The Forest Whitiker Peace Development Initiative has a SEL/Peace partnership called The Domestic Harmonizer Program (DHP) that is intended to give middle school students and educators the skills they need to identify conflict in their lives and respond to it in a positive way. This program is effective in fostering the peaceful resolution of conflicts on campus and helps improve academic achievements. The program infuses values, attitudes, and behaviors conducive to peace and non-violence into the core academic curricula, allowing both students and teachers to learn tools, skills, and processes to prevent and resolve conflicts in a constructive way. The innovative curricula – rooted in conflict resolution education – incorporates state Common Core standards in English, social studies, math, and science so that teachers can integrate the curricula into their classrooms. The intent is to create cultures of peace at these schools. After a successful pilot of the program at Carnegie Middle School in Carson, WPDI has expanded the program in fall 2019 to two additional schools in Southern California: Stephen White Middle School and STEAM Magnet and Ball Jr. High School.

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What obstacles did you need to overcome as you were implementing the program? Any lessons learned along the way that might be helpful to others just beginning this journey?

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