people forming a peace sign on the beach

Resources for Teaching and Learning About War and Peace

by Marsha Rakestraw War and peace have long accompanied human civilization. And while, as some argue, we may be living in less violent times overall, the news is largely saturated with stories of violence and war. And as much as we say that we want peace, when mass violence occurs — such as it has…

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IHE grad Betsy Messenger and a bunny

I Am a Humane Educator: Betsy Farrell-Messenger

Betsy Farrell-Messenger, IHE certificate graduate, sees the possibilities for the growth of kindness and responsibility. She has been teaching for 21 years. Her focus is the natural sciences, with an emphasis on environmental issues and the connections to humans and animals. Currently Betsy lives in New York and serves her school as a 6th grade…

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4 Video Resources for Exploring Race, Racism, Stereotypes, and Microaggressions

by Marsha Rakestraw Talking about race, racism, and institutional oppression can be challenging, especially when many white people are feeling defensive, uncomfortable, and confused. Videos, including those using humor, can be a great tool for introducing tough-to-talk-about conversations, and a meaningful catalyst for exploring what can be subtle, complex issues. Here are four resources that…

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Cassandra Sheffman

I Am a Humane Educator: Cassandra Scheffman

by Marsha Rakestraw IHE M.Ed. graduate Cassandra Scheffman was raised with a love of animals and the natural world. She has worked in the environmental nonprofit sector, taught high school and as an environmental educator, and now works as the associate director of adult programs at the First Unitarian Church of Portland in Oregon. Cassandra…

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Ivy Mandy Liat

I Am a Humane Educator: Ivy, Mandy, and Liat

Last year Ivy and Liat, students at Reed College in Portland, Oregon, connected with Mandy Schmidt, an IHE M.Ed. student, to develop a humane education summer camp for students in Hefei, China. Ivy (Chang) He, is an international student from Heifei, and founded the group Humaneness 101. Liat Yael Kastner is studying environmental studies and…

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humane education

Resources for Funding Your Humane Education or Changemaking Project

by Marsha Rakestraw You’re passionate about creating a better world. You have a great idea. But what you lack is the funding to implement your project. Many a great changemaking idea has been stifled by the challenge of finding funding. And in the past, options were limited and often a bit complicated. But with the…

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backfire

Beating the “Backfire Effect”

by Marsha Rakestraw It seems like common sense that when we learn that previously-believed information is false – when we receive new facts that contradict what we previously thought — then we’ll change our beliefs to fit with the new information. Right? After all, we’re thinking, logical beings. But numerous studies show that’s not the…

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I Am a Humane Educator: Gypsy Wulff

Teaching has been a part of Gypsy Wulff’s life for almost four decades. An alum of IHE’s online courses, Gypsy, who lives in Fremantle, Western Australia, has worked in primary schools, trained teachers, and has taught adults with physical and intellectual disabilities. She became a music teacher 16 years ago and continues to enjoy working…

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Close up of eye with face painted as the world

14 Children’s Picture Books About Solutionaries

Sharing stories of people who have made a positive difference in the world is a powerful way to inspire youth to become their best selves and to realize their role as committed citizens and compassionate changemakers. Children’s picture books are a great tool for doing so. Here are 14 children’s picture books about solutionaries. 1. …

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Why We Need Humane Education: 35.8 Million Slaves

In some of our professional development at the Institute for Humane Education, participants learn about modern slavery. What they discover often shocks and horrifies them. Many people in developed countries remain unaware of slavery as a contemporary challenge, assuming that such practices ended in the 19th century. And often those who know about modern slavery…

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