WCIA are lucky to draw on a century of Peace Education and Global Citizenship experience, from WW1 to today. Particularly in the age of social media, young people are surrounded by potentially conflicting information on conflict, navigating through this with friends, family, teachers and others’ in their communities. Whilst anxiety is natural, it is important not to try to ‘hide away’ from events.
Experience suggests that open discussion and enabling action are two key ingredients for supporting young people to navigate the uncertainty of war (for example, through writing to their MPs to express concerns). The following links offer useful resources and ideas for parents and teachers:
Talking to Children about Conflict
- Wales Schools of Sanctuary: Speaking with Children about War in Ukraine – Guidance and Resources for Parents, Carers and Teachers
- Save the Children, ‘How to talk to Children about War in Ukraine’ – five tips from a child psychologist and counsellor
- Teachers and parents can encourage children to research and learn more about the history of Ukraine, and Wales’ Peace Heritage of connections and solidarity between the Welsh and Ukrainian people (see below, a ‘History of Solidarity’, for resources links).
- Enable young people to participate in public rallies and gatherings or even organise their own local events.
- Support young people to organise fundraisers, and to research different causes or charities they could support – from medical and health to support for refugees fleeing the fighting.
- Support young people to develop and share their own local Message of Peace and Goodwill (inspired by the Welsh Children’s Peace message broadcast every year since 1922: WCIA’s resource, for Key Stages 2-4, looks at the history and significance of Young People’s Message, and gives ideas for how schools can work with peace messages today).
- Individually or as a group, organise an activity towards Wales’ Young Peacemakers Awards 2022, to be presented at the Llangollen International Eisteddfod this July. Categories include: Young Peacemaker of the year, Young Peace Writer of the year, Young Peace Artist of the year, Young Climate Champion of the year, Young Global Citizen of the year, Young Peace Heritage Champion of the year.
‘Peace Schools’ – Resources for Teachers
- WCIA’s ‘Peace Schools’ homepage and network is a Wales-wide scheme offering cross-curricular resources and activities to fit into schools’ everyday lives – promoting positive ethos, critical thinking, creative skills and non-violent conflict resolution.
- ‘What is Peace?’ is a workshop for Key Stage 3-4 learners (ages 11-16) exploring what we mean by peace, characteristics of ‘heroes’, and what young people can do to create a more peaceful world.
- ‘Standing up for your Beliefs’ enables Key Stage 2 learners (ages 10-11), alongside ‘Conscience and Choice’ (KS3-4, 11-16), to explore conscription during WWI and parallels to today, consequences of decisions for individuals and their families. Through case studies, learners can reflect on the role of conscience and conviction in making decisions, and relate back to their own lives.
- The Teach Peace pack by Quakers, WCIA and the Peace Education Network is a pack of ten assemblies, follow-up activities, resources, prayers, and reflections on peace and peacemaking for 5-12 year olds.
Please feel free to send in recommendations for useful resources and links to: WalesforPeace@wcia.org.uk