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Peace Education across Cultures: Applications of the Peaceable Schools Framework in the West Bank

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Since 1992, the authors have worked with a diverse group of U.S.‐based teachers and community workers who have developed and used a comprehensive framework to promote and sustain peaceable schools and communities. The framework draws on European, African heritage, Latino, and Native American traditions, but our applications have mostly been within U.S. contexts. In this article, we describe what we learned while using the framework with Palestinian colleagues during an 18‐month collaboration. Funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development (AID) with the goal of “cultivating an environment of tolerance, dialogue and civic engagement in Palestinian and Israeli schools,” Seeds of Peace contracted with Peace First to lead a series of workshops for Palestinian educators; Peace First worked with Lesley University faculty to provide teacher training support. The contract for this project did not include cross‐border issues or collaborations; the workshops focused on communication, critical thinking, respect for diversity and dispute resolution/classroom management. Although the project focused on practice, it also included a small research component—designed to test the usefulness of the Peaceable Schools and Communities framework in a new context. In this article, we review the framework and research that helped guide our work, summarize what we learned, and provide some follow‐up information. We suggest connections to broader peace education in the region, but we do not address broader regional issues. We close with recommendations about how U.S.‐based peace education models might be successfully applied and re‐shaped for work in new cultural contexts.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: October 1, 2012

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