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Gail Skroback Hennessey taught for over 33 years, teaching sixth grade in all but two years. She earned a BA in early secondary education with a concentration in social studies and an MST in social...
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International Day of Peace is September 21st

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Perhaps, you will find this helpful to use on the International Day of Peace.

The International Day of Peace is held every year on September 21st. Also called Peace Day, the first celebration was adopted by the United Nations in 1982. It wasn’t until 2001 that nations of the world established September 21st as the International Day of Peace. In 2017, the theme for the International Day of Peace is “Together for Peace: Respect, Safety, and Dignity for All.” At the United Nations, in New York City, the Japanese Peace Bell is rung to start the day. Made from coins collected by children from sixty countries, the Peace Bell has the following words engraved on it, “Long live absolute world peace.”  There is a minute of silence at noon (at all time zones around the world).

Possible Activities for the International Day of Peace

  1. The dove is the international symbol of peace. Draw/color a picture of a dove. Write a statement about the International Day of Peace.
  2. Write an acrostic poem using the word PEACE.
  3. Have students list some of the places in the world where there is conflict. Locate these places on a world map. Ask the students if they have any prior knowledge about the areas.
  4. Alfred Nobel established the Nobel Peace Prize. Learn about some of the people that have received the award. The youngest recipient was teenager Malala Yousafzai.
  5. Make a Peace Pole (“May Peace Prevail on Earth”) and place in the lobby of your school.
  6. Read Sadako and the One Thousand Paper Cranes. A free online version of the book is available here. Make an origami paper crane.
  7. Make a pinwheel for peace.
  8. Share with kids how to say "Peace" in many different languages and have them write peace in different languages.
  9. Check out my Purple Turtle story, “Purple Meets Dovey, the Dove.”
  10. Have students illustrate one of these quotes and write a short paragraph explaining what they think the quote means.
    1. “Peace begins with a smile.” - Mother Teresa
    2. “You cannot shake hands with a clenched fist.” - Indira Gandhi
    3. “If you want to make peace with your enemy, you have to work with your enemy. Then he becomes your partner.” -  Nelson Mandela
    4. “An eye for an eye only ends up making the whole world blind.” -  Mahatma Gandhi
    5. “It isn't enough to talk about peace. One must believe in it. And it isn't enough to believe in it. One must work at it.” - Eleanor Roosevelt
    6. “While you are proclaiming peace with your lips, be careful to have it even more fully in your heart.” -  Francis of Assisi
    7. “If you want peace, you don't talk to your friends. You talk to your enemies.” - Desmond Tutu

Gail Hennessey

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Note: Illustration from