In this lesson, students will use their ideas about peace from the unit to build a “peace chain.” As incredible as it sounds, I have found that many students do not know how to do something as simple as make a paper chain. This lesson gives them the chance to consolidate what they have learned while working together on a cooperative project.
To review what has been learned about peace and to build a paper chain, a visual reminder of the many things the children know how to do to create a more peaceful world.
Each child will complete three or four chain links. On one side the child will write a “Peace is . . . . . “ statement. On the reverse, the child will write an “I can . . . “ statement.
Remind the children of the song they learned, “I’ve Got Peace in My Fingers” by Susan Salidor. Show them the peace video if you haven’t already. Explain that today’s lesson will be a chance to review and consolidate everything they have learned about peace while working together to make a “Peace Chain.”
Put up the class notes about what peace means to them. You should have this left over from an earlier lesson. Read through the list together.
Ask each child to make three links in a paper chain by:
- Writing a “Peace Is” statement on one side of the paper strip: Ex: Peace is a smile.
- Writing an “I can” statement on the other side of the paper strip: Ex: I can smile every morning.
It is very important that the children write the “I can” statements because this shows that they can act based on what they have learned.
Demonstrate how to put the chain together once they have finished the writing and ask each child to complete three or four colored paper strips.
Give the children time to write their “Peace is” and “I can” statements and then work together to assemble the class “Peace Chain.” You will need an extra pair of hands to help the children put the chain together. See the attachment for an example of a completed chain.
Emphasize that the class knows how to do many things to help create peace at home, at school, and in the community. A few may want to count the number of links in the chain. Others may want to hold the chain or measure the chain. Each time I have done this lesson, the kids have been so proud of their chains! Let them use them in as many ways as you can think of.
- Strips of colored paper for the students to write on, about 2-3 cm wide. You should prepare four strips per child with a few extras in case of mistakes or tears. (I usually use off-cuts from the browser cards which are prepared at the beginning of every year.)
- Dark colored markers or pens.
I have adapted this lesson from a lesson called “Friendship Chain” published in the Olive Branch Teacher’s Guide, 2008.
- To see the original lesson plan, follow this link to the .pdf which contains the lesson plan: https://www.seedsofpeace.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/PeaceGames.pdf
- To find out more about the parent organization, Seeds of Peace, follow this link: https://www.seedsofpeace.org/
Recommended books for this lesson:
Peace, Peace and Conflict, Taking Action, Paper Chains, Crafts, Cooperation