- Kirkby on Bain Primary School


We are a school full of peacemakers!

This means that we work together to build, keep and promote positive relationships in school and apply restorative approaches to behaviour and learning.

Restorative approaches

Restorative approaches allow schools to become solution focused. They allow children to develop strong conflict resolution skills; learn about their own behaviour and its effect on others; encourage children to recognise harm caused and to resolve their own conflicts in an appropriate and supportive way. We call this peacemakers.

What is peacemakers?

Peacemakers is an approach that helps build, maintain and repair relationships in school.


Who are the peacemakers in our school?

  • All children
  • Peer mediators (children who are specially trained)
  • All staff
  • Parents and carers
  • Governors


Building and maintaining relationships

In school we build and maintain relationships using a number of different strategies. Some examples include:

  • check in, check out time
  • circle time
  • collective worship and assemblies
  • peacemaker sessions
  • displays promoting emotional literacy
  • peer mediation


Repairing relationships

During peacemaker sessions everyone involved in an incident is provided with an opportunity to share what has happened, how they are feeling about it and how it has affected them. By going through this process, everyone is able to put right what went wrong whilst feeling listened to. It can bring those affected by conflict and those responsible for conflict into communication. This helps us build good relationships and gives everyone involved the skills needed to resolve problems, begin to repair harm and find a positive way forward. Using this method allows both children and adults to become more independent and develop empathy for others.


How do we help children to actively problem solve?

When our children find themselves in conflict or upset we will ask them:

  1. What happened?
  2. What were you thinking/feeling when it happened?
  3. What do you think/feel now?
  4. Who has been affected or upset by this and how?
  5. What needs to happen to put this right?


What is check in/check out time?

Check in/check out time is an opportunity at the beginning, during and at the end of the day for children to say how they are feeling. If the children give a negative response, then this will prompt a member of staff to have a further discussion and find out what the issue is. This enables the child to verbalise their feelings and create a positive response so that he/she can move forward as, often, worries which seem big to a child can easily be solved. It also allows pupils to understand how others might be feeling so that they can be supportive too.


What is circle time?

During circle time, all the children from one class, sit together in a circle to do activities and learn from each other. The activities and conversations that take place during circle time are designed to help develop emotional literacy, empathy and co-operation as well as building and maintaining relationships.


Emotional vocabulary

We ask that the children explain how they are feeling so that they can identify how they react when they have these feelings and how they can respond well to them. As such we try to move language away from “happy”, “sad” and “angry” and towards more specific language such as “proud”, “frustrated” and “annoyed”.


Why peacemakers?

  • To provide a safe environment and opportunities to discuss issues
  • To encourage appropriate behavioural choices
  • To encourage people to talk about how they think and feel
  • To develop an acceptance of responsibility
  • To develop emotional intelligence