Every day some young adolescents in America's middle schools use violence as a way of resolving their problems. Many of them do not have the skills to deal with anger or feelings of hostility that they maybe experiencing as a result of conflict with friends, family or with each other. They need teachers and other caring adults to teach them the skills necessary to resolve their anger and conflicts.
The purpose of this unit on "The Roots of Violence in Society" is to provide young adolescents the opportunity to develop skills that are necessary to solve anger and conflicts in a positive and less destructive manner. The focus of this unit is on the status of: male-male violence, female-female violence, male-female violence, group against group violence and property violence (theft or vandalism).
This unit is written for social development classes and can be used with students in grades 5-8. The Roots of Violence in Middle Schools addresses Content Standard 2 of the Social Development Curriculum for New Haven Public Schools: Promotion of Emotional & Mental Health. This means, as a result of teaching this unit, students should develop pro-social attitudes and values. For example, students will understand the effect people have on one another, explore basic groups of feelings and their importance in our lives, analyze their need to belong to some group and the role this need plays in peer selection, and evaluate personal behaviors that may hurt themselves or others. This approach provides an effective way for students to solve problems and take responsibility for one another.
This unit consists of content knowledge, lesson plans, a resource list for teachers, teacher reading list, student reading list and a bibliography.
(Developed for Social Development, grade 8; recommended for Social Development and Biology, grades 5-8)