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Teaching Peace in Many Languages International collaboration to advance social and emotional learning. Today’s panelists Žydrė Arlauskaitė Vilnius Children’s Support Center Vilnius, Lithuania Arja Sigfrids Akat Psychology Consulting Vassa, Finland Eva Gajdosova, Gabriela Herenyiova

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Teaching Peace

in Many Languages

International collaboration

to advance social and emotional learning


Today’s panelists

Žydrė Arlauskaitė

Vilnius Children’s Support Center

Vilnius, Lithuania

Arja Sigfrids

Akat Psychology Consulting

Vassa, Finland

Eva Gajdosova, Gabriela Herenyiova

Comenius University

Bratislava, Slovakia

Joan Cole Duffell

Committee for Children

Seattle, USA

Our mission:

To foster the social and emotional development, safety and well-being of children through education and advocacy.

Our vision:

Safe Children Thriving

in a Peaceful World

about us
About Us
  • Non-profit (charity) based in Seattle, USA
  • Evidence-based programs in 25,000 schools across N. America, thousands more in Europe and Asia
  • Programs to prevent child abuse, bullying, and interpersonal violence through development of social and emotional skills
  • Research-based & user-friendly curricula, outcome evaluation, program training and support; advocacy for social-emotional learning
Teaches social and emotional skills to reduce violent behavior and increase social competence
    • Empathy
    • Impulse Control
    • Social Problem-Solving
    • Emotion Management
  • Training for Trainers, Training for Educators (teachers, psychologists, counselors, school leaders)
  • Parent education component
  • Program implementation support to sustain best practices
Top-rated by US Departments of Education, Health, Justice
  • 15 evaluation studies published in peer reviewed journals
  • Three studies published in Europe; one in press (Norway)
  • One research study underway in Japan
  • Used effectively with companion programs
    • E.g., SEAL in UK; EBS in US; PALS in Norway, Olweus
  • Translated & implemented in 15 countries in Europe & Asia
Second Step partner consortium

Partner organization Country Second Step title

  • Akat Psychology Consult. Finland Askeleittain
  • Vilnius Children’s Center Lithuania Antras Zingsnis
  • Comenius Univ./Profkreatis Slovakia Srdce na Dlani
  • CESEL Denmark Trin for trin
  • Prososial Norway Steg for steg
  • Gíslason & Löwenborg Sweden StegVis
  • CFC Japan Japan Sekando Steppu
  • Incentive Publishing UK Second Step
  • KOMAK Kurdish Iraq Hengaw be hengaw
  • Heidelberg Prevention Ctr Germany Faustlos
  • Innerisaavik Greenland Tulleriit
  • Reynir-rädgjafastofa Iceland Stig af stigi
  • Fundación de Niños Venezuela Segundo Paso
our partnership process
Our partnership process
  • Potential partner contacts Committee for Children
    • We meet & assess their capacity for doing the work
      • Translation, teacher training, pilot testing, in-country outreach, distribution, & support; program evaluation
  • Phase 1: training for trainers, contract for translation, teacher training, pilot
    • If pilot successful, move to cultural adaptations based on pilot feedback
  • Phase 2: Contract for program dissemination, training and school support
  • Regular meetings of Second Step partner consortium
  • In-country program evaluation (goal: use of common measures across countries)
primary accomplishments
Primary Accomplishments

Askeleittain kinderkarten, 1-3 grades ready

  • 4 and 5th grades coming in autumn
SS : but it comes from USA!
  • Cultural adaptation
Finland’s curriculum:

You have to teach social and

emotional skills

second step is it enough
Second Step-is it enough ?
  • Questions from teachers: how do I deal with my difficult students: NOW ?
  • Second Step is a preventive program, but is also modeling a pracatical way to manage with difficult children- in a long term.
  • But it does not give tools to every day smaller distruptive behavior in the classrooms and school.
new trainings to teachers
New trainings to teachers:

Preventing and Solving

Discipline Problems and

Dealing with Challenging


whole school on focus
Whole School on Focus
  • Developing a Schoolwide Prevention and Discipline Plan – a challenge
  • What is the problem? The child, parents, media….or school practice?
good classroom discipline workingpeace
Good Classroom Discipline: Workingpeace
  • To establish clearly defined parameters or rules of acceptable classroom behavior with students
  • To model and roleplay practise
  • To create consequences
  • Two-Stage Time-Out
  • The official website of Kids' Skills
    • English - Kids' SkillsSuomeksi - MuksuoppiSvenska - Jag KanDansk - Jeg KanNorsk - Jeg kan!Deutsch - Ich Schaff'sFrançais - Je suis capableDutch - Ik kan het
after trainings teachers ask
After trainings Teachers ask:
  • Why do we not get this information in our teacher training?
  • Second Step- Askeleittain / StegVis : how can we get that training?
meeting individual and community needs
Meeting Individual and Community needs
  • The role of School Psychologists
  • Total number of Second Step trainers trained in Lithuania : 2
  • Total estimated number of teachers and staff trained from the first year to July 2007 : 50
  • Total estimated number of schools reached from the beginning to July 2007 : 44
  • On the waiting list: new teachers from the same schools; new schools in Vilnius; 28 schools from other towns.
why second step
Why Second Step ?
  • SEL in Lithuania is very poor.
  • For teachers it is a real and simple tool.
  • Good results from neighbouring countries.
  • Reduce agressiveness and violence among children and help them to get new skills to live.
  • Schools have possibility to change their approach to the child: they provide for the child the tools to be well adapted to life rather than to punish for not having adequate skills.
  • Start with one town.
  • Experimental schools.
  • Trained teachers' supervision groups.
  • Training packets: two teachers + psychologist / social pedagog.
  • Research: answers for administration, teachers and parents.
slovak republic



slovak republic39
Slovak republic

Comenius University

  • Eva Gajdosova, PhD.
    • Second Step project coordinator
    • Master Trainer
    • School psychologist
  • Gabriela Herenyiova, PhD.
    • Second Step project researcher
    • Master Trainer
    • School psychologist
who we are
Who we are
  • We are the workers of the Department of Psychology, Philosophical Faculty, Comenius University in Bratislava, Slovak republic (Slovakia).
  • We are senior lecturers and we are lecturing in the pregraduate and postgraduate psychological study with the concentration upon the subject School psychology and School psychologist's work in schools and school establishments (prevention, diagnostics, consultation, counseling, intervention, evaluation).
  • Our students get information on SEL and Second Step and have an idea to use the program in their psychological activities in the future.
our mission
Our Mission

To promote the idea of SEL and Second Step in Slovakia, especially to give information to teachers, educators, school psychologists, and families.

To use Second Step in the state and private schools,counseling centers, school clubs for eliminating aggressiveness and violence of pupils.

To implement Second Step to the curriculum of the primary schools (into the obligatory subject Ethic education).

our programs
Our Programs

We are the authors of the preventive programs:

  • Emotional intelligence developmental program
  • Tolerance program against discrimination and racism
  • Carrier guidance program for teenagers
  • Conflict resolution program for pupils
  • We also have created the humanistic alternative school The School of Friendly Partnership for educating the teenagers with behavior and learning problems in Bratislava. These teenagers are especially pupils with ADHD, so it is useful to use Second Step directly in the education process.
our activities
Our Activities
  • The Ministry of Education of the Slovak republic agreed with the verification of the Second Step Program in the schools (2003)
  • Second Step was the part of the state grant project (2004, 2005) in 14 state and private schools, also in the schools with only the Romany pupils (gypsies).
  • Second Step information was published in the psychological and pedagogical newspapers, presented in the Slovak TV and Slovak radio, in 4 conferences (Slovak and Czech School Psychology Association, Slovak Psychological Society) in 2004,2005.
  • 28 teachers were trained in Second Step program for its application in the classes (2003, 2004).
  • 2 study texts and study materials for teachers dealing with the Second Step
  • Our recent challenge is to get the partnership with the Slovak and Czech School Psychology Association and to organize the training of school psychologists in Second Step.
  • To give information on Second Step in regional and district radio and TV and daily newspapers.
  • To get the license from Committee for Children ( the author and owner of the program) to use the program all over Slovakia and to train Slovak teachers in Second Step after its successful verification in Slovakia.
  • To let parents to participate in Second Step.
  • To get financial support from the government grants and the EU grants for the Second Step developing in schools all over Slovakia.
  • To develop the partnership and cooperation of the management of schools, teachers, school psychologists and parents for promotion social-emotional learning.
  • To promote Second Step needs to present information in media and let speak pupils, teachers and parents about results in behavior and school achievement.
research work
Research Work

1. Research aim

- we want to verify whether the Second Step is also effective in our school conditions which are more different that the conditions in USA and how or in what way can the Second Step influence the behavior of the Slovak first and second grade pupils.

2. Research questions

  • Does the Second Step change the behavior of Slovak pupils?
  • In what way?
  • How great and significant are these behavior changes?
  • Are the behavior changes influenced by gender, type of schools, regions of living or ethnic differences?


  • pupils can better understand their own emotions and emotions of other people
  • instead of using just the phrases "I like it" or "I don´t like it" for expressing of their emotions, they are now able to express that they are happy, angry, surprised, glad, sad, or anxious
  • they can much better understand the emotions of their classmates and they think about their past experiences
  • they can also understand why are their classmates feeling the way they do, and they also realize that one ´ current emotions have their root in the situations which the person experienced in the past
  • they know how to express an emotion in an appropriate way
  • they know how to handle problematic and conflict situations without behaving aggressively towards others
  • if they have to solve problematic situations at school, they ask themselves more often questions such as: What has caused the problem? What kind of a problem is it? Is this solution fair? Will it work? How will it make the classmates feel?
  • the children have significantly improved their social competence and social skills
  • unfriendly or aggressive behavior is much less common
  • they are more emphatic and prepared to cooperate
  • they are able to build up good or at least neutral relationships with their classmates and peers
challenges next steps
Challenges & Next Steps
  • Most current Second Step partners serve developed countries
    • How will our process change as we expand the work into developing countries?
  • How will new partners build capacity to deliver program and training to schools?
    • How will schools build capacity to teach the program to children? Involve parents?
  • How will Committee for Children build the internal capacity to serve this exciting, growing consortium of partners?
why establish partnerships
Why establish partnerships?
  • To scale out evidence-based practice in SEL in culturally appropriate & sustainable ways
  • To support partner organizations’ capacity
  • To teach children a common mental model
    • consistent, congruent framework for empathy, peaceful problem solving, and emotion management
  • Safe Children Thriving in a Peaceful World:
    • There has never been a greater need!