Thinking about implementing an elementary school

mediation program?

 A mediation program is a means to an end; not the end in itself so how you will measure your program's success?

 Your mediators will be on the playground. They will be 'front line' with no intake so safety issues will be of great concern to them:

 " What if the kids who are having the conflict start fighting? between themselves? ... with us, the Mediators?"

 “What if they start swearing?" "What do I do if I see kids fighting?"

"What if my friend is one of the kids who are having the conflict?"

 "When do I go out? Do I have to work with her?"


! skepticism about mediation

! some trainees won't be comfortable with mediation

! some trainees will take to mediation immediately, and amaze you with their abilities.


! blaming, judging, scolding, taking sides  and this is from the Mediators!

! Mediator to kids having the conflict:

"How do you feel about what happened?"

Response? A narrow range of emotions: mad, sad, glad.

! Mediator to kids having the conflict:

"What can you do to solve this problem?"

Response? A narrow range of solution suggestions: share, apologize, stay away.

 Training Elementary Mediators:

! don't have to be fancy or flashy

! be visual

! repeat! repeat! repeat!

! demonstrate: you do it/they do it in small bites

! model +/ mediator behavior and draw attention to it

! give lots of positive feedback to the mediators

! make life connections

! get ready for noise

! be patient

! relax and keep your sense of humor near by



Want details about implementing a mediation program?

Want detailed training suggestions?

  Check out MediationWorks Mediation: An Instructor's Manual


Susan Chang

E-mail Susan Chang