Peace and Conflict

Peace and Conflict
Sean Carroll

Grade 5 students solve a local conflict

Grade 5 students have started a new unit of inquiry under the Sharing the Planet transdisciplinary theme. The focus of this unit is on peace and conflict. As a getting started activity, students brainstormed real and possible conflicts at the personal level, social level, local and national level, and global level.  Students took the assignment home to work with parents to get more ideas about conflicts on the national and global level. It was great to see students thinking about their host country and home country in this activity.

In the second week of the inquiry, students will work through a typical local problem dealing with land use issues. A local park is going to be destroyed to make way for an apartment block.  As can be expected, different people have different ideas about this and must work together to resolve this conflict.

In this activity, students brainstormed likely stakeholders interested in the outcome of this issue.  Students researched some benefits of parks and also the idea of NIMBY-Not In My Back Yard. Students took on the role of one of the stakeholder groups and acted in that groups interest for the rest of the week. Students created arguments, debated with other groups, and gave a formal speech to the class.  After an initial vote, it was a clear a new resolution strategy was needed.  Students decided a compromise was needed and started to brainstorm possible compromises. After more debate, speeches, and impassioned pleas, the class voted unanimously to build the apartment, but the apartment company would have to provide a free shuttle bus to nearby parks.

 

Here are some photos of the students in action. 

 

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