In November 2011 – March 2012 more than 100 teachers of 25 schools from four provinces of Armenia (Lori, Tavush, Aragatsotn, Kotayk) participated in requalification trainings organized by WFD in the frames of “Peace and Conflict Resolution Education in Schools of Armenia” project. The project aims to reduce the number of violation cases and to form an atmosphere of peace in schools. Trainings in provinces are carried out through direct assistance of regional directors of the National Institute of Education (NIE), specialists, principles and vice-principles.
Participants of the trainings are mainly class leading teachers of grades 5-9, who received an opportunity to get acquainted with the topics of the practical guide “Conflict Peaceful Resolution Education in Schools” elaborated by NGO. They also gained skills on conflict management and ways of their peaceful resolution. Teachers were given exact methodical directions, posters to make teaching more interesting and accessible. Participants of the trainings were assigned to carry out five lessons for the pupils. Next meetings with the teachers had the aim to discuss the classes, impact of these classes on pupils as well as behavioral changes noticed during peace studies. Most of the participants confirmed, that the topic is indeed very up-to-date and extremely important for pupils. Teachers greatly valued and appreciated the methodical handbook and posters. They mentioned, that the classes have had positive impact on pupils’ behavior, they have started to ponder and discuss their steps, they have learned to listen and understand others.
Teachers think that continuous studies are required in order to mark success. They confirmed that they would continue to carry out the classes during new academic year:
“Most importantly, the classes are educative and our goal has been to make it pupils’ own. We will put classes on a more firm fundament starting from September, will carry out the classes in more organized manner and I am confident that it will certainly give its positive fruits” said the vice-principle of Gandzasar village school.
Gnel Tigranyan, director of NIE Lori regional office, mentioned: “I have personally participated in a few classes and am very impressed. I honestly wish, that all subjects in schools would be carried out in this way, because I saw children’s excitement, handmade materials and performances, which make classes more interesting. It would be great, if all schools of Armenia will be involved in this project, because the need is indeed real and results are tangible.”
Teachers who have organized and carried out peace classes received appreciation letters from WFD. Peace education in other provinces of Armenia will be continued as scheduled, starting from next academic year.