Program Goals/Target Population
Responding in Peaceful and Positive Ways (RIPP) is designed to provide conflict-resolution strategies and skills to sixth-, seventh-, and eighth-grade students in middle and junior high schools. The goals of RIPP are to reduce aggressive behavior and violence in school-aged youth, and to intervene with young children to help them avoid potential violence in adolescence. The program is suitable for children from all socioeconomic, racial/ethnic, and cultural backgrounds.
RIPP is a school-based violence-prevention program. The program combines a classroom curriculum of social/cognitive problem-solving with real-life, skill-building opportunities, such as peer mediation. Students learn to apply critical thinking skills and personal management strategies to personal health and well-being issues. RIPP teaches key concepts, such as:
- The importance of significant friends or adult mentors
- The relationship between self-image and gang-related behaviors
- The effects of environmental influences on personal health
Using a variety of lessons and activities, students learn about the physical and mental development that occurs during adolescence, analyze the consequences of personal choices on health and well-being, learn that they have nonviolent options when conflicts arise, and evaluate the benefits of being a positive family and community role model.
RIPP draws from theories of social cognition, problem-solving, and emotional processes that are essential in controlling aggressive behavior and in increasing social competence. RIPP targets a developmental phase in the child’s life, the transition from elementary to middle school, as an opportunity to intervene to prevent violence.