ERIC Number: EJ856407
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Nov
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
"Thank You for Making Me Write This." Narrative Skills and the Management of Conflict in Urban Schools
Harris, Alexis R.; Walton, Marsha D.
Urban Review: Issues and Ideas in Public Education, v41 n4 p287-311 Nov 2009
We studied 364 narratives about personal experiences with conflict written by urban 4th, 5th, and 6th graders. Narratives were examined in terms of children's narrative and perspective-taking skills and the responses to conflict they described. Several features of narrative were reliably coded, including level of violence described in the story, children's descriptions of internal states, moral evaluations, and responses to conflict. Children described the use of communication as a response to conflict more than any other response. Qualitative analyses revealed a relationship between children's response to conflict and their narrative skills, moral evaluations, and descriptions of emotion, intentions, and mental states. Children who reported the use of communication in response to conflict wrote stories containing very low levels of violence and also displayed attentiveness to others' internal states and strong narrative form. In contrast, children whose narratives reported the use of retaliation in response to conflict were unlikely to report about internal states or to display strong narrative form. Recommendations are given for dealing with conflict in the classroom, for focusing on narrative skill development, and for creating a narrative culture within schools.
Descriptors: Urban Schools, Personal Narratives, Conflict, Elementary School Students, Perspective Taking, Violence, Psychological Patterns, Responses, Communication (Thought Transfer), Writing (Composition), Narration
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Education; Grade 4; Grade 5; Grade 6; Intermediate Grades
Authoring Institution: N/A