Book reviews, resources and musings on peace education. A blog for teachers, child care providers and parents interested in developing a more peaceful world.
Tuesday, June 9, 2009
Fwd: Wednesday Night at the Northstar Cafe - Hope to see you on the 17th!
Thought this might be of interest...
Please join us June 17th for an interesting, informative, and informal event that is open to the public. Come on down to the Northstar Cafe, get yourself a coffee or tea and treat and settle in for a great discussion. Bring a friend!
Pollution in and Around Us: Moving from Knowledge to Action June 17th, 7-8:30 p.m. Northstar Cafe, 225 Congress Street, Portland
Each of us is polluted with dozens of hazardous industrial chemicals, according to several studies. These chemicals are found in products we use every day: plastic containers, toys, furniture, fabric, automobiles, TVs and stereos, water bottles, medical supplies and personal products like shampoo, hairspray and perfume. They are in our homes and offices, food and water, and the air we breathe. Increasingly, we are learning that they are also in us.
In 2006, 13 Maine women and men vounteered to have their bodies tested in the first-ever study of chemical pollution in Maine People. This study found a total of 46 different chemicals (of 71 tested) in samples of blood, urine, and hair. On average, each participant had measurable levels of 36 toxic chemicals in their bodies. (to download the study, visitwww.cleandandhealthyme.org)
Increasingly, such chemicals are being linked to health problems, such as reproductive health disorders, cancer, learning and behavioral disabilities, diabetes and obesity.
On June 17th, 7:00 - 8:30 pm at the Northstar Cafe (225 Congress Street, Portland) the Environmental Health Strategy Centerwill host an informal conversation with three women who used their own experiences with environmental toxins to create different types of positive, constructive engagement:
Beth George, lawyer, mother and founder of Speltright Baking Elisa Boxer Cook, journalist, educator, and mother Lora Winslow, founder of the Naked Truth Project, and Director of Marketing and Sustainability for O'Natural's Inc.
We'll listen to their stories, and have an open exchange about how each of us deals with toxins around and in us. We'll learn about local resources for more information and ways to get involved and active to create safer products, homes and workplaces for us all.
This is a WiFi and cell phone free event. Thank you for your cooperation!
For more information, please contact: Kristine Jenkins, Environmental Health Strategy Center, www.preventharm.org, 878-0082/ 409-9193 (cell), firstname.lastname@example.org
Anti-Bias Curriculum: Tools For Empowering Young Children, by Louise Derman-Sparks (1989), Washington, DC: NAEYC - includes both philosophical and theoretical overview and specific activities to use in a preschool setting.
Teaching for Diversity and Social Justice (new edition in 2007) - a fabulous source book, although appropriate for the oldest children. includes both philosophical and theoretical overview and specific activities to use for adults and older children
That's Not Fair : A Teacher's Guide to Activsim with Young Children (2000) by Ann Pelo and Fran Davidson. Redleaf Press.
Writing for a Change : Boosting Literacy and Learning Through Social Action. This book is a collaboration between the National Writing Project (USA) and the Centre for Social Action (UK). The first half of the book describes a variety of experiences engaging in social action in the classroom. The second half provides specific models and activities to use. The book emphasizes creative and critical problem solving skills.
Heart Politics by Fran Peavey
What is Peace Education?
There are many dimensions to peaceful parenting, educating and living. Ghandi's famous words "Be the Change you Seek in the World" implore us to balance our work for a peaceful world with efforts toward finding inner peace. Yoga, meditation, writing love letters (instead of hate mail), sitting in silence, looking for the best in others -- these are peaceful practices that occur in our everyday lives and promote a peaceful existance. These are important practices - and easy ones for me to overlook. Yet they are not the only pieces. We also need collective action, creative problem solving and smart conflict resolution.
There seem to be 5 basic elements to peace education with young children:
1) Teaching children to calm themselves and develop a sense of inner peace, including teaching kids how to "cool off" when they are angry.
2) Teaching children a more expansive vocabulary around emotions and group process. There are many resources to promote social and emotional intelligence, and this learning helps kids develop empathy and to care about community.
3) Teaching children about social justice and diversity -- promoting anti-bias education and providing kids with information about "isms" (both historical and current) and tactics for challenging and resisting the status quo.
4) Providing children/community members with clear strategies for solving conflicts that allow all community members to maintain thier integrity and inclusion in the group. These strategies are non-violent and focus on win-win solutions. Confict is understood as normal, healthy and providing opportunities for growth and learning.
5) Education about peacemakers, peace movements and the possibilities of non-violence in social change. This moves the arena out of "skill building" and into content -- learning about the world of peace and peacemaking in a historical and global context.