The Power of Positive Peer Pressure

by Marsha Rakestraw A 2012 survey of teen volunteers revealed that the main reason teens volunteer is because their friends are doing it. As social animals we pay attention to what those around us are doing; and because we like to feel part of the “in” crowd, we’re often willing to conform so that we’re…

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war & peace

Children’s Picture Books About War and Peace

by Marsha Rakestraw Some children have known war their entire lives. As journalist and peace teacher, Colman McCarthy says, “Why are we violent, but not illiterate? Because we are taught to read.” We teach children science, math and competition, but not peace. We offer them lessons on good character and anti-bullying, but often don’t model…

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What Makes a Humane Being?

What Makes a Humane Being?

What are the most desirable and undesirable qualities of humans? Use sample stories and pictures to help students identify our best (and worst) qualities and how we can encourage humane qualities in ourselves and others. Recommended for grades 3 through 6. Time: 30-60 minutes   Common Core Standards for this activity (pdf): Download Common Core…

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