benefits from listening exercise.
I tried the listening technique demonstrated in class last week with my family. We used a beanbag as a prop and sat in a circle in the Iiving room. The question I posed to the group was, ”How can we work together as a family?”
I took the first turn. My suggestion was to have a message center or bulletin board.
My six-year-old son David was next to hold the beanbag. He repeated my suggestion and he added that he thought we should all help each other doing chores around the house.
The beanbag next went to Christen, my four~year-old who was too shy to talk at first but with a little coaxing, we got her to say she wanted a bulletin board.
My husband, John, had the next turn. He is usually a complainer so he had a bit of trouble not complaining and trying to come up with a positive suggestion, but finally said, ”Teamwork.”
Brian, age eight, was next. He restated his dad’s idea and added that he thought that we should stop fighting so much and then we could work together better.
Lastly, I took the beanbag and repeated Brian's suggestion. The technique worked fairly well. Christen was too young perhaps to understand how to participate, but with time I think she would become more confident and talk in her turn. This experience was also good in that one person was not allowed to dominate the conversation and there was only one topic being discussed at one time, instead of two or more.
In many family conflicts, going off on more than one topic can hinder anything from being done.
Submitted by a parent from the lnterparish School of Religion, Akron, Ohio, while taking the ALTERNATIVES TO VIOLENCE course.
Resolving human problems nonviolently requires getting the facts which includes all feelings and perceptions as well as what happened.
Submitted by Danene M Bender
Editor of Alternatives to Violence Course