In this lesson, students are encouraged to think about what they can do, say, and express to create a peaceful school and a more peaceful world. Building on the wonderful piece by Susan Salidor, children will learn a song that helps them structure their thinking about peace.
Students will learn to sing “I’ve Got Peace in My Fingers” by Susan Salidor. Then, they will brainstorm, in small groups, actions they can take, words they can say, and feelings they can express to promote peace.
Each student will be able to sing “I’ve Got Peace in My Fingers” and will be able to describe three things he or she can do to promote peace.
Remind students that their Unit of Inquiry is about understanding peace and what we need to have a peaceful world. Also remind students that the most important thing in the library is not books, it is information! Information can be found from many sources: books, posters, videos, newspapers, videos, etc. We can also gather information from many sources, including songs. Explain that today the class will learn a song that will help them think about peace.
Teach “I’ve Got Peace In My Fingers” by Susan Salidor. This is a simple but very catchy song. I learned it in a Kindergarten in Vienna, but you can learn it from Ms. Salidor here:
After the children have sung the song a time or two, use a flip chart and point out the following structure. A simple T-Chart works well:
Peace/Fingers Shake Hands (Taking Action)
Words/Head Talk Things Over (Language, Speaking)
Love/Heart Expressing Feelings (Showing Concern and Care)
Ask the children to work in groups and brainstorm other things they can do, say, or express to promote peace. Examples could include:
Peace is a pat on the back. (Action)
Peace is a high five. (Action)
Peace is taking turns. (Action)
Peace is sharing. (Action)
Peace is waiting patiently (Action)
Peace is helping (Action)
Peace is shaking hands (Action)
Peace is playing games together (Action)
Peace is telling jokes with a friend (Speaking)
Peace is Listening (Language Skill)
Peace is asking to play (Speaking)
Peace is giving a compliment (Speaking and emotions)
Peace is using kind words (Language)
Peace is sharing ideas (Language)
Peace is a smile. (Feelings)
Peace is making a new friend (Concern, Feelings)
Peace is sharing your feelings (Emotion)
Peace is a hug. (Emotion and Action)
I have also had kids say things like, “Peace is a Good Night’s Sleep.” The kids will come up with amazing ideas.
Record their ideas because these ideas will be used in the next lesson. The plan is to build on these ideas and put together a “Peace Video” for the class. This can be used to help celebrate World Peace Day or to simply promote peace and understanding at school and in the community.
After the brainstorming session, have students come back to the carpet or circle and wrap up by having them share some of their ideas. Emphasize that there are many ways to show peace and promote peace and that we will carry on working with these ideas in the next lesson.
- Flipchart paper, enough for each small group to have a piece.
- Video and projection for “I’ve Got Peace in My Fingers” by Susan Salidor
Peace is an abstract concept, but Ms. Salidor’s song gives students a simple structure for organizing their thoughts. I have used this lesson series several times with Grade 2 children, and the kids are always so proud of their thinking and the finished video. This is part one of a lesson series that will culminate in a class video, but it is an easy way to integrate technology, build on the Unit of Inquiry concepts, as well as get strong literature and music tie-ins.
Recommended books for this lesson:
This lesson does not use a text, but I will list a few appropriate texts in Lesson #2 of the Peace series.
Peace, Singing, Conflict Resolution, Love, Discussion, Songs