Mountain View Elementary Celebrates School-Wide Commitment to Responding to Conflict in A Positive Manner
Nobody likes to get their feelings hurt! While most of us mask the hurt pretty well, it negatively effects affects us in a variety of ways. Most certainly it affects students who may have a hard time learning if they remain focused on a negative interaction with a peer or teacher.
With that realization in mind Mountain View Elementary developed and implemented a Positive Responses to Conflict Curriculum for students Kindergarten through 5th grade. All adults in the school have also been trained to model these basic practices in their conflicts with students and each other. At a recent assembly the school celebrated the completion of the annual seven week rotation of teaching grade level appropriate lessons on kindness and the six basic positive responses to conflict.
Staff members entertained students and provided reinforcement for the following positive responses to conflict:
- Assume positive intent by asking clarifying questions in a positive manner, these questions often begin with “Did you know….”
- Politely ask someone to stop a behavior and tell them why.
- Wait and cool off followed by using another strategy.
- Simply let it go.
- Compromise and share.
- Talk it out using a structured process including: calming strategies, positive body language, and script prompts.
“The Conflict Wheel” is a graphic designed by Mountain View staff to promote the use of these strategies. The conflict wheel can be found on posters in all all rooms of the building, on a large sign on the playground and on lanyards carried by teachers while on recess duty.
A smaller version of the conflict wheel, with a description of the 6 strategies is discussed with and given to families at open house and conferences to promote its use at home. In April 2016, 87% of the 189 Mountain View Elementary families who returned a survey stated they utilized the 6 positive responses to strategies to resolve conflicts at home.