THE BERLIN MOOT – A conference pioneering new approaches to peace: 17-18 April in Berlin

THE BERLIN MOOT: A peace conference on 17-18 April

FEATURE | 17 Jul 2023

Conflict analyses for teaching in German schools

Students learn what is happening in Ukraine or Sudan

image missing ALT text © Kenny Eliason, Unsplash

We help teachers develop lessons that tackle solutions to violent conflict.


 

When students approach teachers with questions about the war in Ukraine, Afghanistan or Syria, a short "That's complicated!” is not enough. Even at an early age, pupils want to know what armed conflicts are about and what kind of peace initiatives exist. Teachers can now draw on a wide range of tools that cover this topic. The Service Agency for Peace Education, which is supported by the Berghof Foundation, the State Agency for Civic Education, and the Ministry of Education of Baden-Württemberg, has published conflict analyses on 18 countries (in German, some materials are available in other languages) and is continuously working to expand their collection of materials.

The potential of the cooperation between conflict research, practical peacebuilding work and peace education became particularly clear in this collaboration.Anne Kruck, Advisor for Peace Education Approaches

At the core of this initiative is the question of how to convey comprehensive knowledge about conflict in an accessible way. Students want to understand what is at stake in the individual countries, who is involved, and what peace efforts are already in place. The demand has become increasingly evident since the start of the war in Ukraine. This gave rise to the idea of making use of models and explanatory approaches rooted in practical peace work and conflict research and applying them to educational materials that help understand the various conflicts.

Students of peace and conflict research have developed the materials according to a scheme initiated by the Service Agency. The Berghof Foundation's country experts then contributed their feedback. "The potential of the cooperation between conflict research, practical peacebuilding work and peace education became particularly clear in this collaboration," says Anne Kruck, who supervises the project on behalf of the Berghof Foundation. "The outcome is scientifically sound, enriched with regional expertise and practical experience, and at the same time comprehensible for students."

Die Servicestelle Friedensbildung Baden-Württemberg hat Konfliktanalysen aus friedenpädagogischer Sicht für zahlreiche Länder weltweit erstellt – u.a. für Afghanistan, Syrien oder die Ukraine.
The Service Agency for Peace Education Baden-Württemberg has produced conflict analyses tailored to peace educators. It covers case studies worldwide, including Afghanistan, Syria and Ukraine.
Mit den Analysen lernen Kinder und Jugendliche die Geschichte und Hintergründe der einzelnen Konflikte – wie hier beispielsweise im Jemen – kennen.
With these tools, children and young people can learn about the history and background of conflicts, such as the conflict here in Yemen.
Arbeitsblätter regen die Schüler*innen an, die Positionen und Bedürfnisse der verschiedenen Konfliktparteien zu verstehen.
Worksheets encourage the pupils to understand the positions and needs of the different conflict parties.
Anhand des Konfliktbaum-Modells werden die Ursachen und Auswirkungen besprochen.
The causes and effects are discussed using the ‘conflict tree model’.
Um verschiedenen Kompetenzstufen gerecht zu werden, werden auch Konfliktanalysen in einfacher Sprache, wie zum Beispiel zu Afghanistan, angeboten.
In order to cater for different levels of competence, conflict analyses are also offered in simple language, for example on Afghanistan.
Für den Fremdsprachenunterricht liegen Analysen in Spanisch, Englisch und Französisch vor.
For foreign language teaching, analyses are available in Spanish, English and French.
Für die höheren Klassenstufen bietet die Servicestelle auch Material an, damit Schüler*innen lernen, wie sie selber eine Analyse verfassen können.
For the higher grades, the Service Agency also offers material so that students can learn how to write an analysis of conflict themselves.

In addition, parts of the material were written in easy and simple language to cater to different levels of competencies. Several conflict analyses have also been translated into English, French and Spanish for foreign language teaching.

The aim of the materials is for students to strengthen their analytical skills. In addition to the conflict analyses themselves, there are also suggestions for how different grades can further engage. Younger pupils learn to read conflict analyses. They work out the cause and effects of armed conflicts with the help of the ‘conflict tree model’; intermediate students analyse the positions, interests and needs of conflict parties; and at the highest grades, they learn how to create conflict analyses themselves.

Another incentive of the programme is to introduce students to a range of conflicts worldwide. This helps them to develop a greater awareness of "forgotten crisis regions", enabling students to make their own judgements on news media. Furthermore, the case studies should make visible to students where international and local peace efforts are already taking place and shed light on where efforts are still necessary.

The ability to analyse a violent conflict is established in Baden-Württemberg’s curriculum for grade 10. Hence, the material on conflict analysis can be used by teachers in class. As one teacher emphasised in the evaluation of a teacher training course: "The topics, the links and hints, the overview and solution sheets, the background information, ... all this was wonderful!"

Our conflict analysis materials are in great demand. The number of users on our website has increased tenfold since their publication.Dr. Julia Hagen, Head of the Service Agency for Peace Education

The page impressions also show how well the material is received: "Our conflict analysis materials are in great demand. The number of users on our website has increased tenfold since their publication," says Dr Julia Hagen, Head of the Service Agency for Peace Education. "This motivates us to gradually expand and update our pool of materials." Currently, a learning poster and an explanatory video are in creation, which illustrate the various steps of a conflict analysis. In addition, educational materials are continuously being added, such as analyses of the conflicts in Sudan or Iran.


All materials can be found on the website of the Service Agency for Peace Education.


Media contact

Florian Lüdtke
Media and Communications Manager
+49 (0) 177 7052758
email hidden; JavaScript is required