compendium & resources


Educators know that developing any kind of literacy requires practice. Building on the literacy model for reading and writing, we need to see peace as a skill set that we must work hard to master, and dedicate years to develop. And even once developed, the skills of peace making must be actively maintained, rather than passively habituated.

You will find on this page, some resources built around peace literacy themes, that will help students develop, master, and maintain their peace-making skills, including:

  • rubrics

  • group projects

  • assignments

  • in-class exercises

  • films

  • websites

  • scholarly articles

  • community activities


Want to share your own ideas? We'd love to hear from you!  Contact

rubrics to accompany skills taught in lesson plan 1


college level exercises/assignments


high school level exercises/assignments


middle school and primary level exercises/assignments

  • Middle School Level In-class Activity on Animal Posturing to accompany Chappell's The End of War, prepared by Susan Radford

  • A "StoryBird" about respect to help kids doing group work in class, designed by Kim Cowperthwait.


classroom materials and books for educators

  • Poster: Aggression and the Fires Burning Beneath, inspired by a design from Krista Hensley.

  • The 4-Way Test for Transforming Conflict, pamphlet designed by Rotarian Action Group for Peace. For more on the 4-way test and other great Rotary Peace Resources, visit here:

  • Books for kids 4-8yrs

    • The Barnyard Buddies STOP for Peace, by Julie Penshorn

      Themes: Conflict resolution, calm, mindfulness

      Age Range: 3 - 9 years

      Grade Level: Kindergarten - 3

      Series: The Barnyard Buddies

      Hardcover: 32 pages

      Publisher: Smart Tools For Life; First Edition edition (July 6, 2017)

      Language: English

      ISBN-10: 0998869104

      ISBN-13: 978-0998869100

    • The Contest Between the Sun and the Wind (Rise and Shine) Aesop’s Fable retold by Heather Forest and illustrated by Susan Gaber

      Themes: Wisdom, calm, and forethought vs. rashness, brute strength

      Grade Level: Preschool - 3

      Lexile Measure: AD520L (What's this?)

      Series: Rise and ShineHardcover: 32 pages 

      Publisher: National Geographic School Pub; 1 edition (June 23, 2010) 

      Language: English 

      ISBN-10: 0874838320 

      ISBN-13: 978-0874838329

    • Moody Cow Meditates by K Lee MacLean

      Themes: Aggression, mindfulness, meditation, calm

      Age Range: 4 - 8 years

      Grade Level: Preschool and up

      Hardcover: 32 pages 

      Publisher: Wisdom Publications; 1 edition (September 1, 2009) 

      Language: English 

      ISBN-10: 086171573X 

      ISBN-13: 978-0861715732  

    • When Sophie Gets Angry, by Molly Bang 

      Themes: Aggression, mindfulness, meditation, calm

      Age Range: 4 - 8 years

      Grade Level: Preschool - 3

      Lexile Measure: 340L (What's this?)

      Hardcover: 31 pages

      Publisher: Blue Sky Press; 1 edition (March 1, 1999)

      Language: English

      ISBN-10: 0590189794

      ISBN-13: 978-0590189798

  • Caren Stelson’s powerful books for children, including Sachiko: A Nagasaki Bomb Survivor’s Story and A Bowl Full of Peace: A True Story

films featuring themes consistent with peace literacy

  • Nobel Peace Prize winner Wangari Mathaii's non-violent strategies for environmental advocacy are documented in Taking Root: The Vision of Wangari Mathaii

  • Animals posturing

  • Humans posturing

    • With their characteristically brutal and incisive humor, comedy duo Key and Peele illustrate the human reluctance to engage in hostile aggression in “Hold Me Back” (Comedy Central)

  • Trauma and other underlying fires that cause human aggression

    • Mike Tyson Interview (HBO Real Sports)

    • With their characteristically brutal and incisive humor, comedy duo Key and Peele illustrate the vulnerable emotional life of a bully in “School Bully” (Comedy Central)

    • Children Full of Life - a documentary from Japan showing how Mr. Kanamori, a teacher of a 4th grade class, teaches his students teamwork, community, the importance of openness, how to cope, and the harm caused by bullying

  • Empathy building

    • Using infants to help elementary school children learn empathy: The Roots of Empathy Project

    • Using shelter dogs to help prisoners learn empathy:
      Dogs on the Inside - Trailer

  • Using respect in policing

  • On dehumanization

    • British comedy duo Mitchell and Webb, portraying two German SS officers, who start out, like all of us, assuming they’re on the side of good. At some point they are no longer sure: “Are We the Baddies?”

    • “Don’t be a Sucker” was made by the US War Department in 1943 and is a short (17 mins) and skillful illustration of how dehumanization works and how to resist it.

    • Four Hours at My Lai A devastating look at the massacre committed by American soldiers during the Vietnam war, the men who participated, the dehumanization of the Vietnamese women and children, and the one man who intervened.

    • The Power of Music An American World War II Veteran talks about rehumanizing German soldiers

    • A Class Divided - a 12 min. excerpt from Jane Elliot’s 1970 social experiment on dehumanization with her third grade class divided by eye-color.

  • Changing minds by appealing to worldviews

  • Strategy and discipline in the Civil Rights era protests as documented in the Nashville lunch counter sit-ins.

online resources


scholarly articles by faculty who teach peace literacy

Baesler, E. J., & Lauricella, S. (2013). “Reaching peace by teaching peace: Assessing instruction of the nonviolent communication and peace course.” Journal of Peace Education, 10, 1-18.
Baesler, E. J. (2017). “I’d rather teach peace: An autoethnographic account of the nonviolent communication and peace course.” Peace Studies Journal, 10(2), 71-75.


Clough, Sharyn. (2020). “Charity, Peace, and the Social Epistemology of Science Controversies.” In Social Epistemology and Relativism, co-edited by Natalie Ashton, Martin Kusch, Robin McKenna, and Katharina Sodoma. New York: Routledge.

Clough, Sharyn. (2020). “Peace Literacy, Cognitive Bias, and Structural Injustice.” In Approaches to Social Justice Education: Equity and Access in the College Classroom. Co-edited by Nana Osei-Kofi, Bradley Boovy, and Kali Furman. New York: Routledge.  

(email for a copy of either essay).


stories from the popular press


April 2019, article in Wired magazine on the personal connections provided by virtual reality - VR responds to our need for Belonging.


peace literacy curriculum

We offer peace literacy lesson plans and study guides suitable for use in k-12 classes, higher education, and community organizations.

six outlines to get you started:

These six single-page outlines summarize the introductory frameworks and diagnostic tools we cover in our curriculum and workshops (available in English, Spanish, and French)

  1. understand human needs and the tangles of trauma

    (E) (S) (F)

  2. learn the anatomy of aggression

    (E) (S) (F)

  3. recognize the power of respect and resolve conflict

    (E) (S) (F)

  4. strengthen communities

    (E) (S) (F)

  5. rehumanize the dehumanized

    (E) (S) (F)

  6. make good decisions, take effective actions, and unlock the power of waging peace

    (E) (S) (F)peace literacy 


peace literacy workshops

We have a number of workshops coming up this year that are open to the public - check them out!

reports from the field


Teachers who’ve used our materials share their stories.

a new peace paradigm:

our human needs and the tangles of trauma

A short essay for download.


why our world needs peace literacy

A short essay for download.


Your donations help sustain our work to provide free peace literacy curricula to educators.