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Curious George and ‘repairing the harm’ in schools

Claassen-Wilson, David
June 4, 2015

Source: (2001) Restorative Justice in Action (Spring): 5-6. Special School Edition. Denver, Colorado: Colorado Forum on Community and Restorative Justice. Downloaded 2 April 2004.

David Claassen-Wilson is the Restorative Justice Coordinator for the Colorado School Mediation Project. He notes that children’s literature has the power to convey profound truths. In his experience, he has found the “Curious George” series of children’s books to be very useful in conveying the basic idea of restorative justice; namely, the stories in the books teach lessons about the need to “repair the harm” caused by wrongdoing. Using the structure of the stories as a framework, Claassen-Wilson describes his work in assisting educators with difficult cases of conflict and wrongdoing in schools through restorative justice responses. He explains the fundamental difference between the traditional school approach to wrongdoing and the restorative justice approach, and he illustrates the application of restorative justice through a particular case in a middle school in Colorado.


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