Use English to learn conflict resolution; use conflict resolution to improve English.

MSL Homeschool

MSL Homeschool

Make Yourself At Home With MSL

When it comes to conflict resolution training, is there anything new under the sun?  

I think one of my students invented a new model, but please read the blog and then you tell me: 

1.  Is it new? 
2.  What should we call it? For now, I’ll call it “MSL Homeschool.”
3.  Would you like to try it?

First, here are four things that are not new about MSL Homeschool:

  1. Role-play conflicts suggested by the students: workplace, romance, environment/business, etc.
  2. Role-play preparation: conflict styles, active listening, process; etc.
  3. Role-plays & coaching
  4. Debriefing & reflections

So, what’s new?

  1. The students: A small group of close friends
  2. The location: One student’s home, in this case, a beautiful home in the Innsbruck Alps
  3. The schedule: One full day, with breaks for hearty home-cooked meals & snacks and time to hang out with friends 
  4. The process: Students could choose mediation, negotiation or simple active listening with a friend.
  5. The prep: Before we met, students had read core MSL materials and most of Getting to Yes and had contacted me to discuss possible conflicts. 
  6. The language: The students spoke English as a Second Language and wanted to improve their English skills in new and authentic ways.
  7. The idea: A wonderful student benefitted so much from her MSL course in UC Berkeley's Summer English Language Studies Program that she wanted her friends back home to experience it for themselves. They invited me and I made a house call - to Innsbruck!

After studying the "iceberg of conflict" in countless ADR classes, I finally got to see an actual iceberg in Innsbruck. I couldn't resist holding up my "iceberg of conflict" diagram in front of the real thing.  

The "Iceberg of Conflict" finally meets an actual iceberg! (Innsbruck, Austria)


What a wonderful day of work & play, insights & laughs. Friends creating a close-knit circle of support – with a common language and approach that became a second language - to help each other with conflicts & conundrums for years to come. 

Friendship + trust + MSL + home! Why didn’t I think of that?!

So, you tell me: Is this new? What should we call it? Would you like to try it?


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