Teachers Guidebook – War and Peace

The activities in this Guidebook are designed for students from 6th to 9th grade and for Youth and Adult Education. This scope does not present pedagogical problems because the proposed activities are conducive to allowing the teacher to adapt as needed – adjusting, reducing, simplifying, developing, elaborating each one according to the teaching-learning context.

The broader aim of the proposed activities is to encourage solidarity and harmony at school and in the family, helping promote a culture of peace. It is precisely for this reason that group activities are emphasized (to encourage cooperation and positive leadership), and in some suggestions integration of different members of the school community: principals, students, teachers, counselors, family members.

The specific objectives are expansion of the students’ cultural universe and development of the following abilities: attention, observation, concentration, organization, discipline, comprehension, interpretation, verbal and nonverbal communication and expression, reporting of facts and ideas, analysis, synthesis, sensibility to critique, skills in presenting arguments, creative thinking, collaboration, evaluation and self-evaluation, flexibility.

The three main thematic threads for all the activities are war, peace and Portinari’s art. Of course, as do the artist’s panels, we deal with “war” and “peace” symbolically, as with situations and contexts associated with these concepts. Thus, peace is harmony, brotherhood, justice, tolerance, respect, preservation, joy; and war is conflict, discord, injustice, intolerance, aggression, destruction, suffering.

The activities proposed – research, reading, interviews, visiting, analyzing films, producing texts, making visual art pieces, creating choreography, dramatizing, doing musical productions, and others – already diversified due to the interdisciplinary nature and scope of the target audience, also vary in terms of the teaching tools used.

In conclusion, Portinari’s work - particularly the "War" and "Peace" panels – are the inspiration for this Guidebook, with its proposed activities opening channels for communication, construction, communion, respect and freedom – essential in a Culture of Peace.