[semester equivalent = 2.00 credits]



Suzanne Warner



Albert Einstein said, “Peace cannot be kept by force; it can only be achieved by understanding.” These words are the basis of peace in our classrooms. Peace means empathy for others, comprehension of differences, and knowledge of how and why to bridge those differences. In this course, teachers will have the opportunity to explore what it means to create a peaceful classroom, incorporate activities that promote peace, and create a social and emotional learning environment for students to feel safe and willing to take risks to learn. 

This course is appropriate for teachers K-12.

LEARNING OUTCOMES: Upon completion of this course, participants will have:

  • Knowledge of how to incorporate lessons and activities about peace in the classroom.
  • An understanding of how a peaceful classroom environment will benefit all students.
  • Researched themes of peace in literature.
  • Researched community service activities and their positive impact on students.

Completion of all specified assignments is required for issuance of hours or credit. The Heritage Institute does not award partial credit.

Completing the basic assignments (Section A. Information Acquisition) for this course automatically earns participants their choice of CEUs (Continuing Education Units), Washington State Clock Hours, Oregon PDUs, or Pennsylvania ACT 48 Hours. The Heritage Institute offers CEUs and is an approved provider of Washington State Clock Hours, Oregon PDUs, and Pennsylvania ACT 48 Hours.



Continuing Education Quarter credits are awarded by Antioch University Seattle (AUS). AUS requires 75% or better for credit at the 400 level and 85% or better to issue credit at the 500 level. These criteria refer both to the amount and quality of work submitted.

  1. Completion of Information Acquisition assignments 30%
  2. Completion of Learning Application assignments 40%
  3. Completion of Integration Paper assignment 30%


CREDIT/NO CREDIT (No Letter Grades or Numeric Equivalents on Transcripts)
Antioch University Seattle (AUS) Continuing Education Quarter credit is offered on a Credit/No Credit basis; neither letter grades nor numeric equivalents are on a transcript. 400 level credit is equal to a "C" or better, 500 level credit is equal to a "B" or better. This information is on the back of the transcript.

AUS Continuing Education quarter credits may or may not be accepted into degree programs. Prior to registering, determine with your district personnel, department head, or state education office the acceptability of these credits for your purpose.




None. All reading is online.





Assignments done in a course forum will show responses from all educators who have or are taking the course independently. Feel free to read and respond to others' comments. 
Group participants can only view and respond to their group members in the Forum. 

Assignment #1: Introduce Yourself

Introduce yourself using Flipgrid (discussion link) with a 3-5 minute video. Share a bit about yourself professionally, what interests you about this class, what concerns you about your students in terms of creating a peaceful classroom environment, and what you hope to gain from this class. 

After you have uploaded your video on Flipgrid, post in your student response box a short note "Done." Also, please add the link for me to review your video.  (If you need to use a password to access this topic, it is: Heritage.)

Assignment #2: Peace in Literature

Several books present a central theme of peace.  Perhaps you already know of some, either through your readings or curriculum/lessons that you already teach. If you need ideas, look at the bibliography at the end of this syllabus, do some research on your own, or peruse one of these websites:

  1. Select and read a book(s) that interest you at a professional level – either a topic related to peace that you want to explore or a book(s) that you can use with students. 
  2. Write a 2-page paper briefly (no more than a paragraph or two) summarizing the book(s). The remainder of your essay should focus on 4 -5 key points that apply to your current teaching/counseling/administrative situation and how you plan to implement it in your classroom/program/school.

Post your response

Assignment #3: Classroom Lessons & Activities about Peace

  1. Watch this TED Talk about Teaching with the World Peace Game:
  2. Read through the lesson plans/activities that are appropriate for the grade/subject/level you teach:

Consider a behavior that is happening in your classroom or one that you are concerned about on a larger scale, such as bullying or prejudice. You may choose to write a 300-word paper, create a presentation (8-10 slides), or create a video (5-8 minutes) – your choice - and include:

  • A description of the behavior/concern.
  • Detail how it is negatively impacting your students and you.
  • By what means (lessons, activities, other) can you work towards resolution – the goal being a classroom where your students can get along and be respectful of one another. 
  • Include any lessons you create, presentations, activities, etc., that will be part of the resolution process.

Post your response

Assignment #4: Student Engagement with the Local Community

Read the following articles on community engagement and its impact on students:

Watch the following videos:

Create ONE of the following

  • An educational presentation (8 - 10 slides) for students and their parents of the benefits of community service and the impact on a peaceful classroom and world. Be sure to include examples of community-based engagement opportunities.
  • A presentation (8 – 10 slides) or video (4-5 minutes) of a community engagement project you and your class were able to implement in your school. Include a description of the project and photos or videos of your students in action.
  • A presentation (8 – 10 slides) or video (4-5 minutes) of a community engagement project you and your class were able to implement in your local community outside of school. Include a description of the project and photos or videos of your students in action.
  • A presentation (8 – 10 slides) or video (4-5 minutes) of a community engagement project you and your class were able to implement remotely or independently as a class project.  (Perhaps students are asked to do some volunteering or community engagement on their own. Then, the class comes together to present their activities to one another – this can be in-person or remote.) Include a description of the project and photos or videos of your students in action.

Post your response

Assignment #5: Culminating Assignment

This final assignment for Section A is one where you will summarize your thoughts on the process of creating peace in your classroom. Consider the following as discussion points (although you are not limited to these prompts):

  • What is the vision you have for your classroom, and how do you see creating peace in your classroom?
  • What will you need to do to create a classroom whose guiding philosophy is one of peace?
  • What are some potential barriers you may face when creating a classroom where peace is a goal?
  • What are some ways you can overcome and/or work around these potential barriers?
  • How will you assess your students and yourself in terms of creating an environment of peace?
  • What are your next steps?

Choose ONE following to present your answers:

  1. Write either a 500+ word paper                    
  2. Create a PowerPoint or Google Slide Presentation (500-word-equivalent; about 10-15 slides)
  3. Create a video (500-word-equivalent)

Post your response



In this section, you will apply your learning to your professional situation. This course assumes that most participants are classroom teachers who have access to students. If you do not have a classroom available to you, please contact the instructor for course modifications. Assignments done in a course forum will show responses from all educators who have or are taking the course independently. ​Feel free to read and respond to others' comments. Group participants can only view and respond to their group members in the Forum. 


Assignment #6: Lesson Plan for a Classroom of Peace

Create a lesson plan for students (or, if not applicable, in general for children/teens/adults) on any topic(s) related to peace in the classroom (or the environment in which you know the intended audience). Perhaps you want to focus on a particular area of concern that you are observing, or maybe it is a general lesson – whatever you need at this time.

  1. Briefly describe the lesson. Explain why you have chosen this lesson and what you hope to accomplish by this lesson.
  2. Using the Lesson Template provided by Heritage (link) or any lesson template of your choosing, write an action plan of how you will teach this lesson. Include all materials you plan to use.
  3. If possible, teach this lesson and write a reflection. Among other aspects to be included in your reflection: What went well?
  • What did not go well?
  • What – if anything – would you change next time?
  • Were your expectations met?
  • How did the students respond, and how was their behavior (or classroom environment) the same/different after a few days?

If it is not possible to teach your lesson, then in place of the above, please choose from one of the following options:

Option A) 
Plan and facilitate a workshop or seminar to a colleague(s) on the idea of lessons of peace in the classroom. This could be written as a presentation, informational written material, graphic - it is your choice of how you share the information.                                                                            OR

Option B) 
Mentor a colleague(s) to help her//him/them devise lessons about peace in the classroom. In a 500+ word paper, include a summary of your meetings/conversations, what was discussed, concerns shared, issues, etc.

Post your response

Assignment #7: Implementation & Journal

Not all lessons on peace need to be formal. In fact, many lessons about peace in our lives, school, and world are short and maybe even just a few minutes – whether part of an activity, action or conversation.

Decide one or two informal areas in which you would like to create more peace in your classroom (or, if not classroom, perhaps your own life). Over the course of 2 – 3 weeks, maintain a journal noting what occurred (mini-lesson, conversation, activity, etc.), what went well, what did not go well, whether or not you noticed any more peace in the environment, and any thoughts and feelings at all that arise as you proceed in this journey. Write 500 words (or more) describing the actions taken and your reflection.

Post your response

Assignment #8: (500 Level ONLY)

In addition to the 400 level assignments, complete two (2) of the following:

Option A)
Conduct additional research via periodicals, online articles, or videos about any aspect of peace in the classroom and document the key points you learned in either a 3-4 page paper or a mind map with an equivalent scale of content. Include an analysis of how this research supports or contrasts with the course text and assignments.  Include a bibliography of your sources.   
Option B)
Create an annotated bibliography focused on the topics learned in this class. Include 6 - 8 resources.
Option C)
Create a 15-20 minute PowerPoint presentation that could be used as an in-service to parents and/or colleagues in your community and/or school that describes what you have learned in this class.
Create an assignment of your design with prior approval of the instructor. This assignment will focus on applying the principal concepts, strategies, and resources of this course to the participant’s classroom or other educational settings.

Post your response


Assignment #9: (Required for 400 and 500 level)

(Please do not write this paper until you've completed all of your other assignments)

Write a 400-500 word Integration Paper answering these 5 questions:

  1. What did you learn vs. what you expected to learn from this course?
  2. What aspects of the course were most helpful and why?
  3. What further knowledge and skills in this general area do you feel you need?
  4. How, when and where will you use what you have learned?
  5. How and with what other school or community members might you share what you learned?


Instructors will comment on each assignment. If you do not hear from the instructor within a few days of posting your assignment, please get in touch with them immediately.


Suzanne Warner, M.S., received her Masters Degree in Education from the University of Rochester, New York.  She has taught mathematics in the middle school, high school, and college settings, most recently in Oregon. Suzanne has been lauded by administrators, colleagues, students and parents regarding her teaching and classroom management skills. Her students enjoy learning in a respectful, productive environment, where each student is in control of her/his own learning and behaviors. She strongly believes that all students want to do well, and creates a teaching environment for them to succeed. 

When not in the classroom, Suzanne enjoys spending time with her family reading, hiking, backpacking and traveling.



Diamond, Louise, The Peace Book: 108 Simple Ways to Create a More Peaceful World, Conari Press, 2001, paperback, 191 pages, Grades 7- 12 ISBN 978-1573247702
You are invited to join The Great Peace Give-Away and give people what they truly hunger for in these difficult times--the gift of peace. The Peace Book provides simple everyday tools that can help us have more peace in our lives and in the world.

Hines, Anna Grossnickle, Peaceful Pieces: Poems and Quilts About Peace, Henry Holt & Co, 2011, hardcover, 32 pages, ISBN 978-0805089967

In this evocative collection of poems illustrated by beautiful handmade quilts, Anna Grossnickle Hines explores peace in all its various and sometimes surprising forms: from peace at home to peace on a worldwide scale to peace within oneself. Pondering the meaning of peace and its fleeting nature, this book compels each of us to discover and act upon peace ourselves.

Leach, Michael, Doris Goodnough, Maria Angelini, The Way of Peace: Reading for a Harmonious Life, Orbis Books, 2021, paperback, 224 pages, ISBN 978-1626984165

The latest in the bestselling "Way of" collection is an anthology of inspiring stories, poems, and essays that shows the path to peace-within ourselves, among peoples, and with the earth. Welcome your meditations into the company of Mary Oliver, Thich Nhat Hanh, Dorothee Soelle, Eckhart Tolle, Joseph Girzone, Pope Francis, Henry Nouwen, David Steindl-Rast, Jim Martin, and many others.


Lee, Harper, To Kill A Mockingbird, Popular Library, 1974, paperback, 284 pages, ISBN 978-006093567

A young girl with an adult vocabulary tells the story of a falsely imprisoned and tried African-American. Her father, an attorney, takes on the case to save him - steadfastly ignoring the negative reaction from his southern town folk. Scout, the girl, is accompanied though out the story by her next door neighbor and friend, and, her brother. It is the story of race, injustice and one of the greatest tragedies to be placed on paper.


Monk, Gerald, and John Winslade, When Stories Clash: Addressing Conflict with Narrative Mediation, The Taos Institute Publications, 2012, paperback. 138 pages, ISBN 978-1938552014

Gerald Monk and John Winslade have written a series of books and articles on narrative conflict resolution. This one is intended to give practitioners an accessible window into the skills of narrative practice. In the stories that people tell about conflict, the relationship narrative is commonly shaped to fit the conflict story. But there are always other relationship stories that can be told. This book shows how to find and grow a counter story to the conflict story and to help people make choices about which story they want to perform. Inviting people to shift from a fraught relationship story to one that is more just, peaceful or cooperative is at the heart of narrative mediation. As you might expect, this is a book of engaging stories as well as robust concepts. It shows, it instructs, and it guides. Designed to be able to be read in one sitting, it is, in the end, a book that begs to be used.

Tolstoy, Leo, War and Peace, Oxford University Press, 2010 paperback, 1,350 pages, ISBN 978-0199232765

War and Peace broadly focuses on Napoleon’s invasion of Russia in 1812 and follows three of the most well-known characters in literature: Pierre Bezukhov, the illegitimate son of a count who is fighting for his inheritance and yearning for spiritual fulfillment; Prince Andrei Bolkonsky, who leaves his family behind to fight in the war against Napoleon; and Natasha Rostov, the beautiful young daughter of a nobleman who intrigues both men.  s Napoleon’s army invades, Tolstoy brilliantly follows characters from diverse backgrounds—peasants and nobility, civilians and soldiers—as they struggle with the problems unique to their era, their history, and their culture. And as the novel progresses, these characters transcend their specificity, becoming some of the most moving—and human—figures in world literature.


Verde, Susan and Peter H. Reynolds, I am Human: A Book of Empathy, Abrams Books for Young Readers, 2017, hardcover, 32 pages, Grades Pre-3, ISBN 978-1419737268

Being human means we are full of possibility. We learn, we dream, we wonder at the world around us. But we also make mistakes and can feel fearful or sad. I Am Human affirms that we can make good choices by acting with compassion and having empathy for others and ourselves. When we find common ground, we can feel connected to the great world around us and mindfully strive to be our best selves. Includes a guided meditation.


Verde, Susan and Peter H. Reynolds, I am Love: A Book of Compassion, Abrams Books for Young Readers, 2019, hardcover, 32 pages Grades Pre-3, ISBN 978-1419737268

Love means showing kindness, living with gratitude, and taking care of our minds and bodies. Letting our hearts lead the way can help move us closer to a better world. Grounded in mindfulness and wellness, I Am Love asks readers to look inward when they feel afraid, angry, hurt, or sad. When a storm is brewing inside us and the skies grow dark, the transformative power of love lets the light back in. Includes heart-opening yoga poses and a guided meditation.


Verde, Susan and Peter H. Reynolds, I am Peace: A Book of Mindfulness, Abrams Books for Young Readers, 2017, hardcover, 32 pages Grades Pre-3, ISBN 978-1419727016

Mindfulness means being fully in the present moment. Children can learn how to manage their emotions, make good choices, and balance their busy lives by learning to be mindful, express emotions through speech, find empathy through imagination, and wonder at the beauty of the natural world. Includes a guided meditation.


Webster-Doyle, Terrance, Fighting the Invisible Enemy: Understanding the Effects of Conditioning on Young People, Atrium Publications, 1990, hardcover, 164 pages, Grade level 9 -12  ISBN 978-0942941197
Fighting the Invisible Enemy is for young people and adults who are concerned with living peacefully and with solving problems nonviolently. Fun stories and activities can assist parents, teachers, and counselors who are concerned about the psychological welfare of young people. Ultimately, this book will help readers to understand how conditioned thinking prevents peace.
Winslade, John M. and Michael Williams, Safe and Peaceful Schools: Addressing Conflict and Eliminating Violence, Corwin, 2011, paperback, 208 pages, ISBN 978-1412986755

We know that bullying and violence severely impact children’s ability to learn. If you are serious about creating a safe school climate, this book will show you how. Written by counseling experts, this volume’s variety of research-based techniques help educators and students develop conflict resolution skills that reduce the need for disciplinary action. Each chapter addresses a mode of practice for constructing peaceful interactions, including: Peer Mediation, Narrative Counseling, Circle Conversations, Undercover Anti-Bullying Teams, "Facing up to Violence" Groups, and Restorative Conferences.


Wolf, Aline, Our Peaceful Classroom, Parent Child Press, 2009, paperback, 64 pages, 7-9 years old, ISBN: 978-0939195046

The Montessori classroom as students see it -- the order, serenity, respect for others, care of the environment and appreciation of many cultures that is the hallmark of the Montessori experience. Illustrated by Montessori school children from around the globe.