Young Peace Leaders: Cultivating Forgiveness

“As I walked out the door toward the gate that would lead to my freedom, I knew if I didn’t leave my bitterness and hatred behind, I’d still be in prison.”  Nelson Mandela


To understand the importance of forgiveness, middle school students do an exercise that helps the development of core values in this video from The Dalai Lama Center for Ethics and Transformative Values.  In addition to this video with teaching tips and related resources, PBS LearningMedia offers a comprehensive, standards-aligned lesson that begins with

a brief teacher-led discussion that connects the qualities of self-acceptance and forgiveness to leadership potential. Students watch a video about self-acceptance and reflect on its meaning and importance. They then do a writing activity that helps them identify and reflect on who they are. In Part II, students watch a video about forgiveness and complete an exercise that helps them put this quality into practice. Students may then (optionally) watch a video about Gandhi and/or Nelson Mandela and explore how forgiveness was a source of strength for these leaders. In Part III, students demonstrate their understanding of how self-acceptance and forgiveness can lead to personal growth and, in turn, concern for others.  Click here for the complete lesson plan.

For the video and teaching tips, click here.

You can also learn more about The Dalai Lama Center for Ethics and Transformative Values at MIT.



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