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TOGETHER WE CAN DO BETTER CONFLICT RESOLUTION: Forming better citizens through Education.

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Presentation on theme: "TOGETHER WE CAN DO BETTER CONFLICT RESOLUTION: Forming better citizens through Education."— Presentation transcript:

1 TOGETHER WE CAN DO BETTER CONFLICT RESOLUTION: Forming better citizens through Education

2 “It is the right of every citizen of the Republic of Malta to receive education and instruction without any distinction of age, gender, belief or economic state.” (Education Act, 1988, Chap. 327) The National Minimum Curriculum states that the Ultimate Objective of Education is “to “to contribute to the best possible formation of every person so that good Maltese and world citizens can be produced.” (Education Division, NMC, p.47, p.47, Dec 1999, Malta)

3 Citizenship Education is not a discrete subject area for students in Malta Elements of citizenship education are integrated across the curriculum and are reflected in subjects such as Personal and Social Development (PSD), European Studies, Social Studies, History and Religion.Elements of citizenship education are integrated across the curriculum and are reflected in subjects such as Personal and Social Development (PSD), European Studies, Social Studies, History and Religion. Citizenship topics relating to social and moral responsibility, community development and political literacy are being taught throughout the above mentioned subjects to students between 11 to 15 years old. (Educ. Div., 2004, Malta)Citizenship topics relating to social and moral responsibility, community development and political literacy are being taught throughout the above mentioned subjects to students between 11 to 15 years old. (Educ. Div., 2004, Malta)

4 Conflict Resolution The Form 3 PSD Syllabus specifically advices to deliver sessions on Conflict Management as an integral part of modules about “Relationships” and “Self- Expression”. (Educ. Div., PSD Syllabus, p.28, 2005, Malta)The Form 3 PSD Syllabus specifically advices to deliver sessions on Conflict Management as an integral part of modules about “Relationships” and “Self- Expression”. (Educ. Div., PSD Syllabus, p.28, 2005, Malta) In conjunction with the PSD syllabus requirements, a Comenius Project was designed under the title “Dealing with Conflict in different Cultures” with the participation of schools from both Malta and GermanyIn conjunction with the PSD syllabus requirements, a Comenius Project was designed under the title “Dealing with Conflict in different Cultures” with the participation of schools from both Malta and Germany

5 What is conflict? A state of disharmony between incompatible persons, ideas, or interests; a clash. Conflict can also be psychological; a psychic struggle, often unconscious which is often the result of simultaneous exclusive impulses

6 What is understood by conflict / bullying in our school... Behaviour (physical / verbal) intended to offend or intimidate the integrity and dignity of the personBehaviour (physical / verbal) intended to offend or intimidate the integrity and dignity of the person Actions including name calling; humiliating criticism; spreading rumours; excessive teasing; physical violence and threatsActions including name calling; humiliating criticism; spreading rumours; excessive teasing; physical violence and threats

7 Where can we find conflict? friendsfamily John F. Kennedy within ourselves neighbours authority international spheres “If we cannot end our differences at least we can make the world safe for diversity.” colleagues

8 Conflicts can be managed through... AvoidanceCompetition IntegrationAccommodation Compromise

9 The 8 steps of managing conflicts 1. Acknowledge Acknowledge 2. Identify and clarify Identify and clarifyIdentify and clarify 3. Diagnose Diagnose 4. Communicate Communicate 5. Generate possible solutions Generate possible solutionsGenerate possible solutions 6. Decide on best solution Decide on best solutionDecide on best solution 7. Implement Implement 8. Evaluate Evaluate

10 How are we helping our students to manage their conflicts? Self – confidence skillsSelf – confidence skillsSelf – confidence skillsSelf – confidence skills Assertiveness skillsAssertiveness skillsAssertiveness skillsAssertiveness skills (Mainly through PSD) Anti-bullying programmeAnti-bullying programme Guidance and Counselling servicesGuidance and Counselling services

11 Personal and Social Development PSD has been introduced in State Schools in Malta (Secondary level) in 1991, after it has been already introduced in some Church schools a decade earlier; originally under the name of “Personal and Social Education” (PSE) (Falzon, R., 2003).PSD has been introduced in State Schools in Malta (Secondary level) in 1991, after it has been already introduced in some Church schools a decade earlier; originally under the name of “Personal and Social Education” (PSE) (Falzon, R., 2003). PSD ultimately aims at empowering the students to develop their full potential, and thus helping them to function effectively in a democratic society.PSD ultimately aims at empowering the students to develop their full potential, and thus helping them to function effectively in a democratic society. PSD classes are held in small groups (10 to 15 students), and lessons are based on experiential learning.PSD classes are held in small groups (10 to 15 students), and lessons are based on experiential learning. In PSD, the students sit in a circle. This class set-up is conducive to positive communication as facilitated by the PSD teacher, whilst put aside physical barriers which can be an obstacle to communication.In PSD, the students sit in a circle. This class set-up is conducive to positive communication as facilitated by the PSD teacher, whilst put aside physical barriers which can be an obstacle to communication.

12 Two PSD Sessions dealt with Conflict Management with the aims: To be aware what are the sources of conflict (e.g. perception)To be aware what are the sources of conflict (e.g. perception) To be aware that conflict outcomes need not be negative, conflict can be an opportunity for growthTo be aware that conflict outcomes need not be negative, conflict can be an opportunity for growth To be aware of the different strategies one can deal with conflictTo be aware of the different strategies one can deal with conflict To help students practice conflict management skillsTo help students practice conflict management skills To recognise the importance of communication in relationships, especially in conflict resolutionTo recognise the importance of communication in relationships, especially in conflict resolution To recognise the importance of listening in communicationTo recognise the importance of listening in communication To recognise the importance of being specific in communicationTo recognise the importance of being specific in communication To help students increasing their self confidence in communicationTo help students increasing their self confidence in communication

13 Two PSD Sessions dealt with Conflict Management with the aims: To make students aware of the different range of feelingsTo make students aware of the different range of feelings To give the opportunity to students to construct empathic responsesTo give the opportunity to students to construct empathic responses To recognise the importance of expressing feelings in Conflict ManagementTo recognise the importance of expressing feelings in Conflict Management To understand what it takes to be assertiveTo understand what it takes to be assertive To help students to practice assertiveness skillsTo help students to practice assertiveness skills To make students differentiate between ‘passive’, ‘aggressive’ and ‘assertive’To make students differentiate between ‘passive’, ‘aggressive’ and ‘assertive’ To have students evaluating their ‘normal tendencies’ in dealing with conflicting situationsTo have students evaluating their ‘normal tendencies’ in dealing with conflicting situations

14 Risk Factors to Decrease Individual Belief that conflicts are resolved through dominance or withdrawalBelief that conflicts are resolved through dominance or withdrawal Belief that one must win in conflictsBelief that one must win in conflicts BullyingBullying Lack of empathyLack of empathy Lack of interest in academic materialLack of interest in academic material Rejection of students who are differentRejection of students who are differentPeer Poor peer relationsPoor peer relations IsolationIsolation Rejection of those who are differentRejection of those who are different Destructive conflicts with peersDestructive conflicts with peersSchool Poor school learning environmentPoor school learning environment Multiple conflict resolution stylesMultiple conflict resolution styles Lack of empathy for students who are bulliedLack of empathy for students who are bullied Lack of empathy for isolated studentsLack of empathy for isolated students

15 Protective Factors to Increase Individual Understanding that conflicts are potentially positiveUnderstanding that conflicts are potentially positive Problem-solving, negotiation, and peer mediation skillsProblem-solving, negotiation, and peer mediation skills Conflict resolution that promotes friendships and belongingConflict resolution that promotes friendships and belonging Ability to take others’ perspectivesAbility to take others’ perspectives Desire to understand students who are different rather than reject themDesire to understand students who are different rather than reject them Motivation to help others who are in distressMotivation to help others who are in distress Deeper level of understanding of academic materialDeeper level of understanding of academic materialPeer Better peer relationshipsBetter peer relationships Ability to maintain friendships, even through conflictsAbility to maintain friendships, even through conflictsSchool Establishes a single conflict resolution methodEstablishes a single conflict resolution method Teachers and administrators model constructive conflict resolutionTeachers and administrators model constructive conflict resolution Explains and demonstrates constructive conflict resolution method to parentsExplains and demonstrates constructive conflict resolution method to parents

16 Benefits Students Enjoy safer schools as a result of reduced violence and fewer destructive conflicts.Enjoy safer schools as a result of reduced violence and fewer destructive conflicts. Improve academic achievement and long-term retention of academic learning.Improve academic achievement and long-term retention of academic learning. Become committed to others' well-being as well as their own.Become committed to others' well-being as well as their own. Learn to apply negotiation and mediation procedures taught in the program to everyday settings.Learn to apply negotiation and mediation procedures taught in the program to everyday settings. Learn that conflicts can have positive outcomes.Learn that conflicts can have positive outcomes.Teachers Have fewer discipline problems to deal with.Have fewer discipline problems to deal with. Have more time to teach, with less time needed for classroom management.Have more time to teach, with less time needed for classroom management. Have a more positive learning environment.Have a more positive learning environment.School Have happier, cooperative students.Have happier, cooperative students. Have a more positive school culture.Have a more positive school culture.

17 How a Donkey and a goat can resolve conflict???

18 …if they are taught how to find the right key to manage their conflicts…if they are taught how to find the right key to manage their conflicts …..keeping in mind that every person is a unique individual…..keeping in mind that every person is a unique individual …We believe that our students can do better… European Year of Citizenship through Education


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