Learning Peace
June 2015
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"What do you hang on the walls of your mind?"

- Zore Neale Hurston




One of our newest board members recently shared that in her professional work as a lawyer she often finds many people, even the most well educated people, do not understand how much power they have to make their lives better just by choosing to respond differently to conflicts and deciding how they will react to their emotions.

After 17 years of experience, w
e've learned that teaching people how to "be peaceful" isn't easy! It takes a great deal of practice and understanding before the concept of peace becomes a real way of being. 

That's why we're sharing easy (and fun!) ways you and your family can practice peace this summer. The methods range from coloring mandalas, taking an online quiz to discover your conflict styles, and even choosing from a list of stress-fighting good food. 


Also, just a heads up that we've moved our list of upcoming events to the end of the newsletter - which you can easily navigate to by using the Quick Links menu on the left.

Peace on,



Peace Learning Center would like to recognize Casey Rucinski as volunteer of the month.

Casey has only been with Peace Learning Center for a short time, but she's already made a lasting impact. Casey has been working these past few months to help us "test drive" a new volunteer program. 

Jay Horan, our volunteer and intern coordinator, said, "Casey is organized, thoughtful, and reliable. On top of all that she is an incredible facilitator! Casey is one of those people that you hope stays around for a long time. PLC is better for having her here."

Thank you Casey for everything you have done for our organization. We are very grateful to have you on our team!



Peace Pages Books & Materials

Are you looking for a way to share your love of peace and learning with children? 

Peace Pages is a fantastic new volunteer opportunity for people interested in working with early elementary school students! 


Each Peace Pages volunteer will be trained to lead fun, simple lessons based on a specially selected set of books about peace. After the training, volunteers can select their own partner school or work with one of Peace Learning Center's schools to lead one hour lessons once per month in the same classroom. This will allow volunteers to build relationships with students while giving children a chance to connect with other caring adults in the community! 

Only 12 volunteer spaces are available during this pilot year of the program. Peace Pages was made possible thanks to a generous grant from the Cathedral Women Foundation. 

If you're interested in becoming a Peace Pages volunteer, contact Jay Horan at jhoran@peacelearningcenter.org to learn more.


Mandalas for Reducing Stress


We're always searching for new self-calming tools to help the children and youth we serve clear their minds so they can focus on learning. We've discovered coloring mandalas is an easy and effective way for people of all ages to reduce their stress. 


Numerous mandala coloring books filled with beautiful images and intricate details are now available for children and adults. Free mandala coloring pages are also available online. To try out this peaceful activity, click here to read a Huffington Post article about a mandala coloring book and print a few of the gorgeous mandalas to color with (or without) your kids this summer! 


Learn more about Peace Learning Center programs by visiting our website at peacelearningcenter.org/what-we-do/


Has anyone ever told you, "When I first met you, I thought you were a real jerk!"?

Most people don't "click" right away. It often take months, or even years, before we are able to understand another person's personality and conflict style. This lack of understanding results in people butting heads - which is especially problematic when they are on the same team! 

Through our PLC Community Programs, we accelerate this learning process from months/years to only a couple of hours by helping team members better understand their own personalities and conflict styles while also gaining insight into the personality and conflict styles of their team members. While we can't guarantee everyone will like each other, at least they'll know how to work with each other better to accomplish their team goals. 

During our workshops we utilize a customized Conflict Style tool to assess and reveal each participant's conflict style. The team then has the opportunity to share and discuss their findings. 

While this activity is best done in a group, it is still beneficial to take some time to discover your own conflict style. Click here to take a short online quiz to learn more about how you resolve conflicts.

Interested in learning more about PLC can help your team become more effective by accelerating the understanding process? 

Email John McShane, Community Programs Director, at jmcshane@peacelearningcenter.org or give him a call at 317-327-7144. You can also visit our website at peacelearningcenter.org/communityprograms to see sample workshop agendas and/or complete an online program inquiry form.  

Tim Nation, PLC Executive Director & Co-Founder
The story we tell ourselves and others is our reality. All the triumphs, challenges and ongoing battles we dwell on in our minds would be forever gone if we lost our lives tomorrow.

The truth is - no one makes you feel or act - it is your choice. The only thing controlled by you, is what you say and what you do.

Indianapolis is a city that studies say is one of the most difficult places to go from poverty as a child to prosperity as an adult.  It is not because there are not opportunities - mostly a lack of relationships and access. 

Education is the ladder out of poverty.  The further you go in education - the higher the ladder.  But we all know, education is time and time is precious when we have families to feed and jobs to work.

Click here to read more.


This section is written by Tim Nation, Executive Director and Co-founder of Peace Learning Center.


Real Comfort Food: 11 Foods that Reduce Stress

We've all heard of comfort food, but most so-called "comfort foods" tend to be loaded with carbs which only provide a temporary calming fix that wears off quickly and makes your mood worse in the long run. 

So, instead of indulging in mashed potatoes and gravy when you're feeling stressed, try choosing your snacks and meals from this list of truly calming foods to help get through your days feeling focused, balanced, and better able to handle conflicts with ease: 

1. Asparagus

2. Avocados
3. Berries

4. Cashews

5. Chamomile tea

6. Chocolate

7. Garlic

8. Green tea

9. Oatmeal

10. Oranges

11. Walnuts

To read more about these foods and the science behind them, click on the title to read 13 Foods That Fight Stress on Prevention.com.

Make Good Changes Happen!  
Please help us thank some of our donors this past month who are helping make peace possible!

  • Angie Ziliak - PLC Board Member
  • Anne Frye
  • Ashley Tucker - People of Peace "POP" Young Professional
  • Charlie Wiles
  • Christen Peterson - People of Peace "POP" Young Professional
  • Jacqueline Patterson
  • Jessica Foster
  • John & Janie Westermeier
  • Judith Ganser
  • Judith Lauer
  • Keri & Ben Hunter
  • Nick Ison - PLC Board Member
  • Patricia Long
  • Robert & Taffy Green
  • Sam Carman
  • Sarah Gardner
  • Teresa Baker - PLC Board Member
  • William & Sarah Littlejohn
  • Clowes Fund - A two year grant to support the Peers Making Peace peer mediation program
  • Braveheart Foundation - A grant to support Peacebuilders Camp
  • Community Crime Prevention Grant - Phase 1 - Grant to support summer camps
  • HC Gemmer Family Christian Foundation - Grant to support One Indy programming at IPS #51 James Russell Lowell

Business Donations:

  • Subway on W. 56th Street - Donated food for Social Justice Camp
  • Duos - Donated food for Social Justice Camp
  • Pure Eatery - Mustached Turtle Dash Sponsor
  • Walmart on Lafayette Road - Donated food for Social Justice Camp
Faith-based Organizations:
  • First Congregational Church of Indianapolis
  • Unitarian Universalist Church of Indianapolis 
If you'd like to join them in supporting peace education, please click here to donate now! 



When: July 6-18, from 9 am to 4 pm (Plus 2 overnights)

Where: Meet in downtown Indianapolis - Indiana Humanities Council: 1500 N. Delaware St., 46202) 

What: We are looking for teens who are dedicated to being a positive leader in their community - people who care, are ready to focus, work hard, and play hard. Click here to learn more and/or apply:  http://peacelearningcenter.org/sjcamp/




When: July 14, 6-8 pm

Where: Meet at the Pacers Bike Share Station at White River State Park (along the Cultural Trail) 

What: A bike crawl around downtown Indy! Learn more about bike safety and resources for riders. We'll also stop at a few of our favorite places. Bring your own ride or rent one from Pacers Bike Share. Click here to RSVP







When: July 20-24, 2015 from 10 am to 5 pm

Where: Peace Learning Center

What: Learn the truth about our climate predicament along with sustainability solutions and civic action opportunities. Enjoy locally grown food, nature hikes, bike rides, a dance party, and a game show! Open to greater Indy youth and teens, 4-12th graders.  Click here 

to apply online.



Peaceful Living for Kids and Families


When: Saturdays - June 13, June 20, June 27, July 11, and July 18

Where: Peace Learning Center

What: A series of fun summer workshops for youth, ages 7-11, and families of any age! All workshops are 2 hours. Visit http://peacelearningcenter.org/summerfun/

to learn more.


 PLC's 3rd Annual Mustached Turtle Dash:

Registration is open!


When: Saturday, Sept. 26th, 8:30 am

Where: Peace Learning Center - Eagle Creek Park

What: 5k run/walk, 10k and 15k run to benefit PLC's peace education programs

Click here to learn more and register. 


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