Objective: To participate in a peace circle and learn how to think like a peacemaker
Grade Level: Kindergarten to adult
Explain that today we are going to think about peace and war. Show the special object. We will start by passing the ___ around the circle. When it gets to you, give an example of what peace is to you. Explain that as each person speaks, everyone will close their eyes and imagine that person's vision of peace. Remind participants to be respectful and not talk unless they have the object in their hand.
1. Pass the object slowly from person to person, listening closely.
2. When done, have everyone sit quietly and take several deep breaths.
3. Repeat the discussion circle, but this time give an example of something that is the opposite of peace.
4. When done, have everyone sit quietly and take several deep breaths.
5. Ask what actions can we take to move the world from war and violence to peace and justice? Explain that they will be reading stories about ways people resisted or stopped wars and worked for peace. Have participants choose a book or person to read about or read one of the shorter books aloud.
6. Make a chart on which to record the actions the characters or people did to make their communities or nations more peaceful. Add to the chart as the group reads and discusses the books. This can be returned to daily over several days. Perhaps, start the project on International Peace Day on September 21, and then continue it until to Nuclear Disarmament Day on September 26.
7. On the final day, have the group reconvene. Go over the list of actions peacemakers have taken. Pass the object and have each person share what they have learned about peacemaking. What is one thing on the list that they might do to help create a more peaceful world and end war, violence, and injustice?
Return to the peace circle whenever a problem arises that needs a thoughtful, peaceful solution. Refer to the chart of peacemaker actions as a guide.