Five Tips for Nurturing Peace With Your Child

Communications Office

We shall walk together on this path of life, for all things are part of the universe and are connected with each other to form one whole unity.”   ~ Maria Montessori, To Educate the Human Potential

When you practice and nurture peace with your child, you help your child develop a strong sense of self, belonging, and purpose. Your child's respect for self, others, community, and the world around them evolves, and they know that they can make a difference. They learn and become a peaceful citizen of the world and an ambassador of peace. So how can you do this? Here are five tips to help you start the journey of nurturing peace with your child.
 

  1. Understand Your Own Peace

    What do you do when things are out of control, or you face conflict with someone else? How do you see and achieve inner peace? Take time to reflect on how you function and handle conflicts in your life. Make a mental or written list of what actions you take to bring calmness and peaceful feelings back into your life when it seems upside down. Do you take in slow breaths, take a walk, or play music and sing? Knowing what works for you builds your own toolbox of peace skills, and you take care of yourself, which you must do in order to then help your child.

     
  2. Lead by Example: You are the Role Model

    When in your presence, your child observes and learns by watching everything you do. Be aware of this fact and consider your actions, words, and the example you are setting. Be compassionate, forgiving, and understanding when dealing with and talking about other people in front of your child. Show grace and courtesy and recognize/acknowledge it in others. For example, when someone holds open a door for you, thank them not for just their actions but also their virtue. For instance, you could say, “Thank you for holding the door. I appreciate your kindness.” Model the behavior you want your child to emulate, have and show.
     
  3. Talk and Read About Peace with Your Child

    What does your child know and think about peace? The best way to find out is to begin a conversation with them about it. Ask them, “What does Peace mean to you?” Once you have an idea of what your child knows and thinks about peace, you can help nurture their understanding through discussion. Peace to them can be as simple as time in a quiet space or on a grander scale of wanting conflict in the world to end. A great starting point for such conversations is to read books about peace and talk about them. Our amazing Teacher Librarian, Poppy Louthan, has created a list of books on peace by grade level, and you can find the list in the previous Eton Journey post, “Eton Reads: Books to Build and Celebrate Peace.
     
  4. Teach and Practice Conflict Resolution Skills

    Conflict happens in everyone’s life, and when it does, help your child learn skills in handling it. First, acknowledge their feelings and help guide them in finding a way to resolve the conflict. For example, if two children both want the same toy, help them talk with each other to develop a solution that meets both of their needs, such as setting a time limit for each to play with the toy. By creating an open dialogue with your child, you facilitate their development of healthy coping mechanisms for dealing with conflict—an essential skill they will be able to use for the rest of their lives.
     
  5. Acknowledge Your Child’s Peacemaking Skills

    When your child resolves a conflict, solves a problem, or communicates an emotion, acknowledge and label it. By acknowledging and labeling, you help your child recognize and value their own capacities and skills for making and building peace.
     
  6. Provide a Place of Quiet and Peace in Your Home

    When children are upset, having a quiet place of their own can assist them in developing their own inner peace. For younger children, you may have to assist them in going to their special quiet place to reflect and calm down. Eventually, they come to know what quietness and inner peace feel like and choose to go on their own when they are upset or have conflict.
  • Nurturing Peace