Means of Engagement

Positive youth development rests on creating inclusive, community-based programmes that help young people grow into mature and well-adjusted adults. It is about nurturing young people’s resiliency by drawing upon their own strengths and capacities. Positive youth development initiatives work towards:

  • supporting youth develop positive, caring relationships with peers, caregivers and other supportive adults in their lives
  • emphasizing on the strengths of young people
  • empowering young people to connect with their communities
  • creating safe and inclusive spaces for dealing with conflict, anti-social behaviour and offending restoratively.

A Collection of games for Experiential Learning and Team Building 

A collection of games compiled by University of Bamberg Social Work professors and students for the purposes of group engagement. These activities and games are designed and organised into 5 categories:

1) Getting to know each other

2) Warm up

3) Problem Solving and group acheivement

4) Concentration and Teambuilding

5) Trust Games

Download Collection of Games for Experiential Learning and Team Building

You may find more resources on Adventure Based Social Work Practice here 

Social Circus Trainer Workshop Notes

Beyond Social Services has been privileged to be among the first to experience the benefits of social circus in Singapore. Since, 2000 we have been applying social circus skills in different settings such as, open areas in neighbourhoods; residential homes and institutions, schools and youth centres serving youths-at-risk and in programmes where the youths attended together with their families.

About these notes
These notes were put together by Samuel Tang who was a workshop participant. They are meant to be shared with anyone who is interested in social circus as the primary purpose of the workshop was really meant to grow the work.

Download Social Circus Trainer Workshop Notes

Adventure-based Experiential Learning (ABEL)

Developed by the Sports and Skills team at Beyond Social Services, this manual aims at training carers, volunteers, youth workers, teachers and other professionals who work with young people on:

  • the philosophy behind adventure-based experiential learning (ABEL);
  • how to use ABEL activities as a form of rapport-building, engagement and counseling;
  • inclusive and constructive techniques in group facilitation and debriefing.

In addition, the guide shares a set of practical resources such as training schedules, debrief formats, and after-training feedback processes that help to make a customised ABEL programme more engaging.

Download ABEL training manual

Moral Reasoning Training (MRT)

Moral Reasoning Training (MRT) is about helping youth make ethical and responsible decisions on their own, and is aimed at enabling them to consistently apply their beliefs and values about right and wrong in challenging, real life situations. The module is meant for caregivers, youth workers, teachers and other professionals who work with young people and:

  • shares the theory behind American psychologist Lawrence Kohlberg’s framework of the six developmental stages of moral reasoning
  • offers a set of group-based, interactive exercises that can be used to engage children and youth.    

Download MRT training slides

The Circle Process

The Circle Process is restorative tool that brings together a group of young people by creating a reflective and inclusive space for creative group-based problem solving around conflicts and challenging behaviour.  It is a systematic, process that reinforces positive values, encourages teamwork and strengthens mutual trust between young people and adults.  The Circle Process is based on the premise that children and youth:

  • want to be connected with others in a positive way
  • are valued members of the community and have a right to their individual beliefs
  • share some core values which indicate what connecting in a good way means 

These training slides can be used to address issues around conflict in range of different settings – be it home environments, schools, after-care or residential facilities. It is meant for caregivers, teachers, youth workers and other helping professionals, and lends an introduction on how to prepare for and facilitate an effective and inclusive circle process.

Download training slides for the Circle Process

Restorative Discipline for Schools

More often than not, traditional discipline methods leave individuals and the school community affected by anti-social behaviour, conflict and/or issues around offending, largely out of the picture. On the other hand, restorative discipline focuses on the needs of those harmed and the school-community of which they are a part.
Furthermore, restorative school discipline gives students opportunities for insight and learning, when particular behaviours are seen to be unacceptable. The positive nature of restorative discipline places an emphasis on future behaviour. It seeks to restore damaged relationships between people by inappropriate or offending behaviour. Instead of asking ‘who did it?’ and ‘what should the punishment be?’ A restorative approach to solving school-based conflict pose a set of different questions: who has been harmed by this incident? What needs to be done to repair the harm? Who is responsible for putting right the wrong? 
The two training modules in this section provide an introductory overview on:

  • how to creatively engage ‘problematic’ young people using a strengths-based approach Download training slides
  • critically thinking about school-based restorative practices and shares a variety of frameworks, including the Social Discipline Window and the Restorative Discipline Ladder  Download training slides

Conflict Transformation: Parts 1 & 2

Divided into two parts, the Conflict Transformation module addresses how to work with conflict within a helping relationship.  It focuses on transforming the conflict into something that is essentially positive and productive by helping us reflect on the epicenter of the conflict and its prevailing episode(s). In contextualizing the tool within the incidence of violent behaviour, the module presents several ways to analyze the epicenter of the conflict and put in place a resolution process that is both effective and meaningful.  In highlighting some of the limitations of two ways in which youth workers may usually respond to conflict, a number of scenario practice exercises are presented.  

Download Conflict Transformation slides

Discipline and Conflict Resolution Routines

Over the years, we have developing a series of disciplinary and conflict resolution routines or methods that help educators, youth and residential workers creatively address issues with respect to behaviour management, restoratively.  In adopting the stance that positive behaviour management techniques are beyond punishment, we share a systematic conflict resolution process by which young people are taught to be responsible and accountable for their actions. These routines have been used in our daily guidance and residential programmes, and could be further customised to strengthen inclusive and restorative school environments.  

Download training slides