Training Program Officer Ted Feifer and Education Program Officer Alison Milofsky facilitated a 3-day workshop for 30 Israeli and Palestinian educators in Limassol, Cyprus on teaching conflict resolution through the English as a Foreign Language (EFL) classroom.

Training Program Officer Ted Feifer and Education Program Officer Alison Milofsky facilitated a 3-day workshop for 30 Israeli and Palestinian educators in Limassol, Cyprus on teaching conflict resolution through the English as a Foreign Language (EFL) classroom. The workshop focused on prejudice awareness and reduction as the first step in resolving conflicts. Trainers shared techniques for exploring concepts of identity and perceptions of "the other;" used exercises and small group discussions to strengthen communication, negotiation and problem solving skills; and considered ways to incorporate a conflict resolution curriculum in the classroom. Facilitators showed how creation of a "safe space" in the classroom could help students discuss their fears, concerns and aspirations.

Although the workshop emphasized professional skills building, it was inevitable that participants would draw on and share their own experiences and those of their students as Israelis and Palestinians living with conflict as a daily reality. Beyond this, the "safe space" established in the workshop enabled participants to discuss conflicts within their own societies as well as between them.

Participants welcomed the practical focus of the workshop. They appreciated the opportunities for interaction with educators with similar professional concerns, but who are operating in different social and political environments. As one teacher noted, the most useful aspect of the workshop was the chance "to share ideas, meet people with another religion and belief, and clarify very natural simple things, which aren't so simple in our everyday lives." Participants found the workshop so rich and useful that they took the initiative to continue to work as a group in the future for mutual support and to share professional information.

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