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Special Needs Students Resolving Peer Conflict: Mock Action Research Proposal Rosemary Blank, Donna Cratensburg-Scott, Michele Deitrick, Nancy Festa University of Phoenix MAT 561 Jane Tiller, PhD July 10, 2006. Problem/Purpose:.

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Special Needs Students Resolving Peer Conflict: Mock Action Research ProposalRosemary Blank, Donna Cratensburg-Scott, Michele Deitrick, Nancy FestaUniversity of PhoenixMAT 561Jane Tiller, PhDJuly 10, 2006

problem purpose

Problem: Special needs students often unable to settle peer differences.

Purpose: Provide special needs students resources/social skills to resolve differences without teacher intervention.

  • Middle school in South Eastern U.S.
  • Population: 182,000
  • Education level:
    • High school graduates = 88%
    • College graduates = 24%
  • Median household income: $43,100
  • Poverty level: 9.9%
work setting
Work Setting:

Rose Nance Middle School

Mission Statement: Empowering each student with the knowledge, confidence and opportunities necessary to meet the challenges of middle school and beyond.

(Student population: 569)

school composition
School Composition:
  • Females 54%
  • Males comprise 46%
  • 37 teachers
  • 2 full time Administrators
our classroom the resource room
Our Classroom:The Resource Room
  • Two Special Education (Cross Categorical) practitioners.
  • Cooperative instruction; equal distribution of duties.
  • Homeroom for 20 of 35 total special education students.
  • Life skills, math, social studies ,science, language arts, and study hall taught in 45-minute “hours”.
problem description

Problem Description:

Special needs students are often unable to manage peer conflict.

problem documentation
Problem Documentation:
  • Data recorded between January 5th and February 2nd, 2006.
  • Major and minor incidents of peer conflict recorded using form.
  • Teacher interventions also documented.
causative analysis
Primary factors

Lack of:


Social skills

Intellectual capacity

Appropriate role models

Lead To

Negative behavior to draw attention away from self

Unable to demonstrate self-control

Unable to recognize emotional cues

Attracted to peers with negative reputation

Lack respect for property, opinions, and uniqueness

Low commitment to education

Causative Analysis:
goals and expectations
Goals and Expectations
  • Reduce the number of conflicts
  • Solve differences without teacher intervention
  • Teacher can teach the lesson without being interrupted by conflicts
  • Major and minor conflicts requiring teacher intervention will be reduced by 80%.
expected outcomes
Expected Outcomes:
  • 80% reduction in conflicts requiring teacher intervention.
  • Student-initiated problem solving
  • Students use self control.
  • 40% additional instruction time gained.
measurement of outcomes
Measurement of Outcomes

Data tables and charts documenting conflicts pre-instruction and post-instruction of conflict resolution and social skills unit.

(In body of chart right-click, select “Chart Object” and “Open”)

analysis of results
Analysis of Results
  • Results analyzed using correlation coefficient.
  • Baseline: data analyzed and charted
  • Post instruction: data collected, charted, analyzed
  • Charts, graphs, essays to document results
mock action research proposal chapter 4
Mock Action Research Proposal Chapter 4

Statement of Problem:

Students with special needs often rely on teachers for solving their differences with peers.


Four Approaches to teaching conflict resolution:

  • Process curriculum
  • Mediation program
  • Peaceable classroom
  • Peaceable School

(Crawford and Bodine, 1996)

topics for discussion
Topics for Discussion

Role Playing

Peer Mediation

Curriculum for teaching self- control

Scripted Lessons

Strategies for developing social skills

  • Journal writing
  • Class meetings
  • Cooperative learning strategies
selected solutions calendar plan
Selected Solutions Calendar Plan
  • January 5, 2006

Data collection for baseline data begins

  • February 2, 2006

Data collection for baseline data ends

  • Social Skills instruction time during 6th period Study Hall
selected solutions calendar plan1
Selected Solutions Calendar Plan
  • Social Skills Instruction: Feb. 6- April 27
  • Role Playing, I messages, Journal Writing
  • Peer Mediation
  • Self Control Skills
documentation of intervention strategies
Documentation of Intervention Strategies
  • Teacher notes number of conflicts,

minor/ major incidents & interventions.

  • Statistical comparison between number of conflicts pre- and post- solution.
  • Amatruda, M. (2006). Conflict Resolution and Social Skill Development with Children. Journal of Group Psychotherapy, Psychodrama & Sociometry, 58(4), 168-181.
  • Bremer, C. & Smith, J. (2004). Teaching Social Skills. National Center on Secondary Education and Transition: Information Brief, 3(5), 1-6.
  • Bos C. & Vaughn, S. (2002). Strategies for Teaching Students with Learning and Behavior Problems. Prentice Hall, Inc.
  • Desbiens, N. & Royer, E. (2003). Peer groups and behaviour problems. Emotional & Behavioural Difficulties, 8(2), Retrieved July 8, 2006, from http://www.sagepub. Com/eic/overviews/Desbiens.pdf.
  • Foster, Diana Alberta (2000) The conflict resolution-training program in a rural, multicultural, elementary school. M.P.H. dissertation, California State University, Fresno, United States -- California. Retrieved July 11,2006, from ProQuest Digital Dissertations database.
  • Gunter, P. & Reed, T. (1997). Academic instruction of children with emotional and Behavioral disorders using scripted lessons. Preventing School Failure, 42(1), 33. Retrieved July 11, 2006, from InfoTrac OneFile.
  • Heinrichs, R. (2003). A Whole- School Approach to Bullying: Special Considerations for Children with Exceptionalities. Intervention in School and Clinic, 38(4), 195- 204.
  • McIntyre, T. (2001). Teaching social skills to kids who don’t have them. Retrieved July 11, 2006, from Behavior Advisor Web site: eres/EDSPC715_MCINTYRE/socialskills.html.
  • National Youth Violence Prevention Resource Center, (2005). Conflict resolution fact

Sheet for teens. Retrieved July 12, 2006, from Web site:

  • School Mediation Center, (n.d.). Helping students solve their own problems. Retrieved July 7, 2006, from Life Trax Training from the Heart Web site:
  • U.S. Census Bureau, (2006). State and county quick facts. Retrieved July 7, 2006, from U.S. Census Bureau Web site:
  • Warne, A. (2003). Establishing Peer Mediation in a Special School Context. Pastoral Care. 21(4), 27- 33. Retrieved July 15, 2006 from EBSCOhost.
  • Warner, Suzanne L. (2005) The effects of peer mediation on conflict resolution in elementary school students. Ph.D. dissertation, Northcentral University, United States -- Arizona. Retrieved July 6, 2006, from ProQuest Digital Dissertations database.