PeaceBuilders

Categories

Categories associated with best practice:

  • Early Childhood (ages 3-5) icon
  • Children (ages 6-12) icon
  • Teens (ages 13-18) icon
  • Before-After School Icon 1
  • Best Practices
  • Community/ Neighbourhood
  • Elementary School Icon 1
  • Healthy child development
  • Injury Prevention
  • Mental Health Icon 2
  • Personal health practices and coping skills
  • Preventing Violence Icon 1
  • Recreation/ Fitness/ Sport Facilities
  • Social environments
  • Social Relationships That Respect Diversity

Determinants of Health: Personal health practices and coping skills, Social environments, Social relationships (including those that respect diversity), Healthy child development

Overview

PeaceBuilders is a school wide violence prevention program for students in grades K-12. PeaceBuilders attempts to create a positive school climate by developing positive relationships between students and school staff; directly teaching nonviolent attitudes, values, and beliefs; and providing incentives for young people to display these behaviors at school, in the community, and at home. PeaceBuilders introduces a common language to a school centered on six principles: praise people; avoid put-downs; seek wise people as advisers and friends; notice and correct hurts we cause; right wrongs; and help others. Activities and rewards designed to teach and encourage these “peace-building” behaviors are woven into the school’s everyday routine with the participation of all staff in the school, including teachers, classroom aides, administrators, librarians, nurses, playground monitors, and any others who regularly interact with students. Parents are critical team members and active participants in building the PeaceBuilders village, and they are offered individualized training in PeaceBuilders skills, routines and rituals to use at home. Relationships are also formed with community businesses, agencies, after school programs and Boys and Girls clubs, to spread PeaceBuilding principles throughout the community. Targeted outcomes include improved social competence, more frequent positive and prosocial behavior, and reduced aggression.

Implementation begins with a 2-hour, developer-facilitated meeting during which the school administrators designated as the site’s PeaceBuilders leadership team share ideas for site-wide activities and create an implementation plan. All school staff then participate in a 4- hour on-site training, during which they learn how to model and support positive behavior using the PeaceBuilders curriculum. Over the remainder of the year, each of the principles is taught by instructional staff in monthly installments. PeaceBuilders principles are prominently displayed throughout the school, and daily rituals are introduced to foster a sense of belonging and provide environmental prompts for positive behavior. Between activities, staff actively monitor hot spots such as lunchrooms and hallways, praising prosocial behavior.

A large scale, cluster randomised controlled evaluation measured the impacts of PeaceBuilders in eight elementary schools in Arizona over three years. Several smaller scale evaluations have also been conducted in different settings (primarily with students in K-6). This research has generally shown that in elementary schools, PeaceBuilders decreased visits to the school nurse, fights, injuries, accidents, vandalism, absenteeism of students and teachers, and aggression, and increased prosocial behaviours, social competence, academic performance and positive school culture.

Primary Source Document

DD Embry, DJ Flannery, AT Vazsonyi, KE Powell and H Atha, PeaceBuilders: A theoretically driven, school-based model for early violence prevention American Journal of Preventive Medicine; 12(Suppl 2): 91-100

Contact information of developer(s) and/or implementer(s)

Founder: Michelle Molina

Sole Source Provider: PeacePartners, Inc.

741 Atlantic Avenue

Long Beach, CA 90813

Toll-free: 1-877-4peacenow (1-877-473-2236)

Phone: (562) 590-3600

Fax: (562) 590-3902

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Intervention Focus

Intervention Goal / ObjectiveLevel(s) TargetedEquity Focus
Prevent violence in schools.
  • Individual level
  • Interpersonal level
People living in conditions of disadvantage are not explicitly stated to be a target population of the intervention.
Foster a peaceful, learning school environment.
  • Organizational level
People living in conditions of disadvantage are not explicitly stated to be a target population of the intervention.
Promote prosocial behaviours among students and adults.
  • Individual level
  • Interpersonal level
People living in conditions of disadvantage are not explicitly stated to be a target population of the intervention.

Health Issue(s) that is/are addressed by the Intervention

Health Promotion

  • Mental Health

Risk Reduction

  • Prevent injury
  • Prevent violence

Specific Activities of the Intervention

  • Curriculum changes in school
  • Group process/program
  • Other training session
  • Provision of planning tools and evaluation tools

Priority/Target Population for Intervention Delivery

Life Stage

  • Early childhood (age 3-5 years)
  • Children (age 6-12 years)
  • Youth (age 13-18 years)

Settings

Educational Settings

  • Secondary/Middle school
  • Before/after school childcare (ages 5-12)
  • Elementary school

Community Setting

  • Home
  • Community/neighbourhood
  • Recreation/fitness/sport facilities
  • Child and youth camp

Outcomes

Outcomes and Impact Chart
Level of ImpactDescription of OutcomeEquity Focus
Interpersonal LevelAt Time 2, compared with students in PBD schools, students in PBI schools reported self-reported less prosocial behavior (Grades 3–5 only, p <.05). At time 3, PBI students self-reported significantly greater prosocial behavior in Grades K-2 students only, p <.05). And at Time 4, students in PBI schools reported significantly greater prosocial behavior in Grades K–2 (p < .05 but lower prosocial behavior in Grades 3–5 (p < .05).Reported outcomes do not distinguish findings specific to people living in conditions of disadvantage.
Interpersonal LevelAt Time 2, compared with students in PBD schools, students in PBI schools reported significantly greater peace-building behavior (for both Grades K–2, p <.05 and Grades 3–5, p <.001). At time 3, significant differences were found only in Grades 3-5 students (p <.01). No differences were found at Time 4.Outcomes are reported for people living in conditions of disadvantage, and are not compared to people living in more advantaged conditions.
Interpersonal LevelAt Time 2 (spring of Year 1), compared with students in the delayed intervention 1 year later schools (PBD), teachers rated students in the immediate postbaseline intervention schools (PBI) as significantly higher in social competence (for Grades K–2, p<.001; effects were marginal for students in Grades 3–5, p <.10). At Time 3 (fall of Year 2), teachers rated PBI students in Grades K–2 and Grades 3–5 as significantly higher in social competence although the effects were stronger for students in Grades 3–5 ( p <.001) than for those in Grades K–2 (p < .10). At Time 4 (spring of Year 2), teachers rated the students in PBI schools as significantly higher in social competence (Grades K–2 and Grades 3–5, p<.001).Outcomes are reported for people living in conditions of disadvantage, and are not compared to people living in more advantaged conditions.
Interpersonal LevelAt Time 2 (spring of Year 1), compared with students in PBD schools, teachers rated Grades 3-5 students in PBI as significant lower in aggression (p<.01); differences between K-2 students were not significant. At Time 3 (fall of Year 2), teachers rated PBI students in Grades K–2 and Grades 3–5 as significantly lower on aggression, although the effects were stronger for students in Grades 3–5 ( p < .001) than for those in Grades K–2 (p < .10.). At Time 4 (spring of Year 2), teachers rated the students in PBI schools as lower on aggression for Grades 3–5 students only, p< .01). No significant differences were found between PBI and PBD schools on students’ self-reported aggression.Outcomes are reported for people living in conditions of disadvantage, and are not compared to people living in more advantaged conditions.

Adaptability

Implementation History

  • Multiple implementations - Different settings/populations/providers - The intervention showed significant adaptability as it has been implemented in different settings or with different populations or by different provider(s). This can include multiple implementations during the same time period. Each implementation of the intervention must have been substantially the same and must have demonstrated positive results for the primary objectives of the intervention.

Expertise Required for Implementation within the Context of the Intervention

  • Specialized skills training provided as part of the Intervention - The intervention does not require individuals or groups with highly specialized training, but requires that individuals or groups be trained as part of the implementation of the intervention.

Are there supports available for implementation

No.

Are there resources and/or products associated with the interventions

No.