Lesson NINE - How to Fix a Wrinkled Heart

 

Lower Primary

 

Negotiating and Resolving Conflict

 


SOCIAL-EMOTIONAL COMPETENCY: Social-Management

 

LEARNING INTENT

Students will:

 

  • Identify helpful and unhelpful ways to resolve conflict

  • Learn how to make positive and responsible decisions

  • Reflective listening skills

  • How to use 'I' not 'you' messages

 

 

KEY VOCABULARY: Conflict resolution, problem-solving, win-win, win-lose, compromise, collaborate, give in, stubborn, negotiate, resolve, avoid, cooperate, I messages, reflective listening.

Resources

Background Information

Disagreements between friends are bound to happen. Teaching children conflict resolutions skills can have a positive impact on their relationships, self-esteem and learning.  Children who have effective conflict resolution skills are happier, have better friendships and are better learners at school.  Playground disagreements can distract students from their learning and have a negative effect on academic outcomes.

Today’s lesson prepares students for negotiating and resolving conflict.  Conflict resolution skills are not innate, they need to be learned and practised. There are many friendly solutions to help friendships during the conflict.  Today’s lesson will look at helpful ways and unhelpful ways to resolve disagreements. 
 
Unhelpful ways to resolve conflict involve a lose-lose or a win-lose outcome.  When conflicts are thought of as a competition where one person wins and one loses, the disagreement may only be resolved short-term.  Often a win-lose outcome will create a new set of problems, such as feelings of resentment or fear in the child who loses and may encourage the child who wins to use intimidation to get what they want.  Unhelpful ways to resolve conflict include force, avoidance and accommodation (giving in).

Helpful ways to resolve conflict involve win-win outcomes where both parties work together to find a solution where everyone wins.  Helpful ways to resolve conflict involve compromise and collaboration. Children require a combination of well-developed social and emotional skills to manage conflicts and disagreements.  Throughout the program, many of the skills needed for conflict resolution have been taught, such as managing emotions (in particular anger), communicating effectively, empathising (understanding other people’s emotions) and listening even when you disagree. 

 

Students will then be introduced to 5 different ways to manage conflict using different animals to explain the different conflict styles.  Students will also practise resolving conflicts following Owl’s three steps to resolve conflict.

Lesson Plan

1.    Introduce Lesson and Review Previous Lesson 

Review the previous sessions by asking students to remember what was covered in the last session. Shape students’ responses to reflect the learning intent from the previous lesson. Revise Group guidelines.
       
Welcome back.  Last week learned more about making friendships work. We looked at how to win and lose gracefully, how to stay friends over different opinions and the importance of being honest.  In today’s lesson, we will look at helpful ways and unhelpful ways to resolve disagreements.

2.    A Gratitude Attitude (5 minutes) 

Sit in a circle. Ask each student to share something that they are grateful for or something positive that has happened to them this week. This simple activity is training students to be positive and to have a gratitude attitude.

A gratitude attitude focuses on the NOW!  Try to pay attention and be thankful for what you already have and not worry about what you don’t have.  People with a gratitude attitude are positive, resilient and happy.

Activity 1: Group Discussion (5 minutes)

Group Discussion Questions

  • Do you remember the last time you and a friend or family member had a disagreement? What happened?

  • How did you feel?

  • How did your friend or family member feel?

  • Did you resolve the disagreement?

 

Disagreements are bound to happen in every friendship.  No matter how old you are!  Disagreements tend to happen more when you’re a kid because you and your friends are still learning the skills to fix problems when you are playing together. Today we are going to learn helpful ways and unhelpful ways to resolve conflicts.

Activity 2: Introducing Conflict Styles (10 minutes)

​I’m going to introduce to you 5 different animals who represent the 5 different ways to take on a conflict, not all of them are helpful in solving a disagreement. 

Place the animals into a bag. Show the children your bag and have them guess which animal you are going to pull out.

Today we are going to look at helpful and unhelpful ways to solve a disagreement.  What does the word disagreement mean? (Argument, conflict, fight)

I’m going to introduce to you 5 different animals who represent the 5 different ways to take on a disagreement, not all of them are helpful in solving a disagreement!  See if you can pick the helpful ways and the unhelpful ways.

In my bag, I have the 5 animals.  Let me see if you can guess the animal I am going to first introduce to you. Let me give you some clues.  Remember to put your hand up.

Crocodile

This animal has sharp teeth, dry scaly skin, a very pointed snout, webbed feet which makes for a very fast swimmer.

 

Yes, it’s Crocodile!

Never smile at a crocodile because crocodiles will snap!   Crocodiles are unfriendly.  Have you ever met a friendly crocodile? Crocodiles solve disagreements by yelling, snapping and arguing.  No one gets what they want and no one is happy.

Pose the question: Do you think this will be a helpful or unhelpful way to solve a disagreement? 

This is an unhelpful way to solve a disagreement.

Puppy Dog

The next animal I’m going to introduce you to has two ears and a tail that wags when it is happy.

Yes, it is a puppy dog!

Puppy dog tries to make everyone happy.  So when puppy dog solves a disagreement puppy will give in.  If you want to solve a disagreement like a puppy dog, one person will get what they want. But the other person who gives in to make everyone else happy does not get what they want. 

Is this a helpful or an unhelpful way to solve a disagreement?

Yes, it will solve the disagreement but only one person gets what they want.  Sometimes giving in to your friend or your brother and sister is okay, but if you are always giving in to your friend or your friend is always giving in to you then one person is being too bossy.

Turtle

Can you guess the next animal I’m going to introduce you to?

The next animal has a hard shell where it can hide.  It has webbed feet and is very slow.

Yes it is a turtle.

Turtle hides from an argument.  Turtle doesn’t like to argue so avoids disagreements by hiding.

Is this a helpful or an unhelpful way to solve a disagreement?

This is an unhelpful way to solve a disagreement because the problem doesn't get solved. 

Sometimes, walking away is a good option because if you are really angry, it can give you time to cool down. But if you want the problem to be solved you will need to come back to talk it out with your friend.

Rabbit

The next animal I’m going to introduce you to has long ears and a short fluffy tail.  This animal hops.

Yes, it is a rabbit.

Rabbit hops forward and back. Both friends might give up something.  Rabbit likes to compromise so that both people in the disagreement feel happy. Have you heard of the word compromise?  What does it mean?

Is solving a disagreement like rabbit helpful or unhelpful?

This is a helpful way to solve a disagreement.

Owl

The last animal I’m going to introduce you to stays up all night hooting.

Yes, it’s an owl.

Owl tries to sort out the problem by being wise and finding a solution.  If you want to solve a disagreement like an owl, both people in the argument will work out the problem.

Do you think solving a disagreement like Owl is helpful or unhelpful?

We are going to watch 4 short movies now.  While you are watching the movie, I want you to think about which animal it reminds you of.

 

4.     Activity 2: Helpful and unhelpful ways to solve a conflict (15 minutes)

We are going to watch 4 short movies now.  While you are watching the movie, I want you to think about which animal it reminds you of. 

Conflict Style 1 – Force (Crocodile)

If no internet connection, ask for two volunteers to act out Conflict Style 1 role-play OR watch Dr Suess ‘The Zax’.

 

Pose questions

 -    What were the Zaxs’ arguing about?

-    Did they resolve the conflict?

-    What happened?

-    How do you think they felt?

-    Which animal does it remind you of?

 

The conflict was not resolved, and both Zax’s were unhappy. We call this a lose-lose approach where no one gets what they want.  Let’s think of some words that describe how croc approaches a conflict.

Write answers on board.  Possible answers: snaps, argues, yells, intimidates, is stubborn, unfriendly, unhelpful

Group Discussion

  • Have you or a friend ever tackled a disagreement like Croc? What happened?

  • Did you resolve the argument?

  • How did you feel?

  • How did your friend feel?


Conflict Style 2 – Collaboration  (Old Wise Owl)

If no Internet connection, ask for two volunteers to act out Conflict Style 2 role-play OR watch the Squirrel and Raccoon.  

** If video is not showing type into google "Bridge" by Ting Chian Tey 

The animals in the first half of the video tackle the conflict like croc, however, the squirrel and the racoon solve their disagreement like old wise old. 

​Pose questions

 -    What happened?

-    Did they resolve the conflict?

-    How did rabbit and squirrel solve the problem?

-    How do you think they felt?

-    Which animal does it remind you of?

 

The conflict was solved, and both were happy.  We call this a win-win approach where everyone gets what they want and is happy.  Let’s think of some words to describe how old wise owl approaches a conflict.

Write answers on board. Possible answers: solves the problem, work together, cooperate, collaborate, happy, friendly.

 

Group Discussion

  • Have you or a friend ever tackled a disagreement like Wise Old Owl? What happened?

  • Did you resolve the argument?

  • How did you feel?

  • How did your friend feel?

Conflict Style 3 – Avoidance (turtle)

If no internet connection, ask for two volunteers to act out Conflict Style 3 role-play or watch Shrek and Donkey – stop at 40 seconds. 

Please pause at 40 seconds to avoid the word ‘shut up’

Pose questions:

 -   What happened?

-    Did they resolve the conflict?

-    How do you think donkey was feeling?

-    How do you think Shrek was feeling?

-    Which animal does it remind you of?

 

The conflict wasn’t solved.  Shrek avoided the conflict by walking away.   Shrek was angry and needed to calm down.  Sometimes, walking away allows you to cool down.  However, it doesn’t solve the problem.  The turtle avoids conflict by hiding or walking away.  Let’s think of some words to describe how turtle approaches a conflict.

Write student responses on white board. Possible answers: avoids, walks away, hides, cools down, calms down, ignore

 

Group Discussion

  • Have you or a friend ever tackled a disagreement like Turtle? What happened?

  • Did you resolve the argument?

  • How did you feel?

  • How did your friend feel?

Conflict Style 4 – Compromise (rabbit)

If no Internet connection, ask for two volunteers to act out Conflict Style 4 role-play or watch Olive Branch

Pose Questions:

 -   What happened?

-    Did they resolve the conflict?

-    How did they resolve the conflict?

-    Which animal does it remind you of?

 

​The conflict was solved, and both were happy.  We call this a win-win approach where everyone gets what they want and is happy.  Let’s think of some words to describe how rabbit approaches a conflict.

 

Write student answers

 

Group Discussion

  • Have you or a friend ever tackled a disagreement like Rabbit? What happened?

  • Did you resolve the argument?

  • How did you feel?

  • How did your friend feel?

 

 

Conflict Style 5 – Giving In/Accommodating (puppy dog)

Sometimes one person may get what they want but the other person doesn’t. If you or a friend gives in often, it isn’t fair.  It’s OK to give in to a friend sometimes, but it isn’t fair if you have to give in ALL the time. Let's thinks of some words to describe how puppy dog approaches a conflict.

Can you think of an example of tackling a disagreement like a puppy dog?

E.g. Your friend wants to play in the sandpit and you want to play in the playground.  You give in to your friend and play in the sandpit.

​Write student answers on board.  Possible answers: giving in, accommodating

Activity 4: Resolving a Disagreement (15 minutes)

We are going to learn how to solve a conflict like wise old owl and rabbit. Remember owl tackles a disagreement by solving the problem and rabbit tackles a disagreement by compromising. Can you please turn to page 134 of your journal?

Let's look at the 3 steps for resolving a disagreement.

Step 1: Cool Off

Ask yourself, ‘Am I ready to solve this problem?’ If you are too angry or upset, give yourself a chance to calm and cool down. You may need to walk away or take a few deep breaths before coming back to solve the problem.

I want you to think back to Lesson 2. If you are too angry or too upset, what could you do to calm your anger?

Remember our deep breathing exercises? Let’s practise deep breathing together. Can you stand up in front of your computer?

 

Step 2: Listen and Talk it out.

Being a good listener is a really important friendship skill and it is especially important when it comes to resolving conflicts.  Taking turns to listen and talk will help you solve the disagreement.

I’m going to read to you now a story called,’ The Peace Rose’ which shows us how to listen and talk to our friends when solving a disagreement.

Read Story ‘ The Peace Rose’. If you don't have a copy, please use the video below (it's the best I could find).

I Messages

When you are solving a problem with your friend it is important to try to start with  ‘I’ by telling them just how you felt and what you would like them to do.

Which one do you think is a more peaceful way to talk to someone in our group who keeps talking.

“Why are you always talking during my lessons? You’re driving me, crazy kid!”

Or

“I feel frustrated when you talk while I’m teaching because then your classmates can’t hear me. Could you please save your talking for a better time?” 

Do you think the first way is more peaceful or the second way? 

Let’s practise this.

Scenarios – I messages

Write the scenario on the board.

I feel (insert feeling) when you (insert behaviour). I would like you to (insert request)

  • Someone keeps taking your stuff without asking.

  • Your friend sends you a mean note

  • Someone says to you that you are not good enough to play football/netball with them.

  • Your friend isn't following the rules of your game

  • Someone kicks your ball over the fence

  • Someone won't let you play in their game

Step 3: Solve

Talk about many possible solutions until you find a compromise like Kangaroo or a solution like Owl If you are having trouble solving the problem, ask an adult for help.

Write on board - What Can You Do?

  • Ignore

  • Talk it out

  • Wait and cool off

  • Walk away and go to another game

  • Tell them to stop

 

I’m now going to read out scenarios and I want you to think of a solution to the problem.  For example, there will be times when your friend doesn’t cooperate with you.  In that case, you may need to walk away and go to another game. 

Scenarios – What could you do?

 1. You get the wrong answer in class and a classmate laughs at you.

2. Someone is making noise on purpose to annoy you.

3. A friend keeps pulling your arm and trying to make you go where they want you to go.

 4. Someone is bragging about getting a high grade on their test

5. Someone told you that your friend was talking about you at lunchtime

6. Someone laughed at you when you tripped and fell.

7. Your brother or sister keeps coming into your room and taking your things without asking

 

Concluding Discussion (5 minutes)

Disagreements between friends are bound to happen.  Next time, when you are having a disagreement with a friend, say to them, ‘Let’s talk this out’.  Listen to your friend’s side of the story and what they want.  Tell your friend your side of the story and what you want.  Remember to try and use ‘I’ messages. Solving a conflict like an owl or like a rabbit will mean that the argument has been solved fairly and both parties feel happy.

Close the session: Thank the group for their participation throughout the session.  Encourage them to practice the new skills they learned during the week.  Share with the group an exciting activity that they will do during the next GRIT lesson.

 

Additional Activity - Role play scenarios (10 minutes)

​We are going to practise resolving a conflict.  Does anyone have a real-life conflict that they would like to practice solving with the group? 

Ask for 2 volunteers to role-play the following scenarios.

​Scenarios

1. It is lunchtime. Your friend wants to play a game of soccer, but you want to play in the sandpit.

2. You and your friend are playing handball.  The ball bounces twice in your square.  Your friend calls, ‘You’re out?’ You argue that your rules are different and the ball is allowed to bounce twice.

3. Your friend takes your pencil without asking.

4. Your friend wants to play in the library, but you want to run outside.  The library is only open on this day.