Conflict Resolution – Basic


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Workshop Session Plan
Key Learning Outcomes



Conflict resolution is a field that is relatively new historically but has developed as conflicts have become more intractable globally and at the local level.  Conflict resolution aims for outcomes that are of a win/win for both parties moving us away from adversarial winning/losing paradigms to one where we get our needs met and share the outcome as community.  Resolving conflict is not about right or wrong it is about coming to a deeper understanding of differences (diversity) and working through a process which focuses on solving the problem not hating the person.   Often conflict resolution can produce transformation of people as their awareness is raised and they develop confidence having resolved conflicts. 

There is a great deal of confusion when people are in conflict, they tend to react rather than respond and they typically see their own view as right and the other as wrong.  This forms positions where people become stuck or resentment can form which go for years if not resolved.  The negativity of conflict is damaging to society and individuals.  It can lead to obstructionist behaviours, to exclusion, to bullying and abuse and can lead a person to suicide.  So the importance of resolving conflict can not be over emphasised.

The basic program just provides an overview of the dynamics of conflict and how we perceive and ways and means of moving towards problem solving and solutions. 

Workshop Focus:
To understand the basic skills in conflict resolution
Target Audience:
All levels (primary, secondary and community)
55 minute session
Expected Outcomes:
To understand the dynamics of conflict and differences, perceptions and solving problems for a win/win. Participants will gain a deeper understanding of empathy in a bullying role play and the roots and shoots of conflict.

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This workshop is designed to give the basics of conflict resolution in a fun and engaging workshop. The workshop takes participants on a journey to discover what is conflict resolution and why it is important.  They will learn to understand how we all divide on a range of parameters into ‘us and them’ and the pulling of opposite forces is demonstrated by a tug-o-war demonstration.  The children will learn about how to approach conflict and will experience aspects of Aikido as a peaceful martial art and how to centre themselves in conflict to respond rather than react. Peaceful martial arts were more about deflecting negative energy and standing in your own power rather than defence or attack. Children will learn about why problem solving focuses on solving the problem not hating the person and to identify the positions and underlying interests of conflict.    Children will discover what empathy means and how it enables children to open their minds and imagine they are the ‘other’.  Children will experience whether they really listen and how this affects what they understand and learn from others and about themselves.   In conflict it is important to learn how to communicate feelings without blaming the other and becoming bogged down in ‘he said’ and ‘she said’, I Statements are statements that help children speak from their own point of view, to express how they feel and what they want.   Children will discuss the roots and shoots of conflict. 

The workshop provides a practical grounding in conflict resolution for both primary and secondary school students and community.  

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Workshop Session Plan

  • Why conflict resolution?
  • Division or unity? (how we divide)
  • Tug-o-war
  • Differences:  Form groups, us and them
  • We see conflict differently (perception)
  • Solving problems
  • Communication:  React or respond
  • Resolve the problem?
  • Approaching conflict
  • Problem solving process
  • The iceberg
  • Why problem solve?
  • I Statements
  • Listening
  • Empathy
  • Roots, shoots and fruits (solutions) to conflict

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Key Learning Outcomes 

  • To understand that differences are natural and can e used to divide people into us and them.
  • To become aware of perception and that we can see the same thing differently.
  • To learn techniques and ways of seeing problem solving.
  • To learn about communication how we respond, the accuracy of listening and how to apply I Statements.
  • To learn through experiential role playing the bullying experience and the importance of empathy.
  • To explore the roots, shoots and fruits of conflict that always there is a way to resolve an issue when you are open to exploring what drives conflict and how creativity can see it differently and create possible outcomes.

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