November 16, 2016
WALNUT, CA—Walnut Valley schools focused on changing hearts and minds during National Bullying Prevention Month.
Westhoff Elementary students moved out of their comfort zone to connect with someone new during a Mix It Up at Lunch Day.
Collegewood Elementary youngsters had their footprint or “STOMP” traced on a “Kindness Starts Here” banner, filling it with positive messages, colorful art, and names to show support against bullying.
“We say YES to choosing kindness, YES to choosing empathy, and YES to becoming responsible, resourceful, respectful, and ready 21st century citizens,” said counselor Erica Robledo.
At Suzanne Middle School, students accepted good deed dares including “Help someone you don’t know,” “Smile at 15 people,” and “Help your teacher after school.”
A clothesline was strung across the amphitheater stage with the messages. Students chose their dare when they walked by, completed it, and returned the card to teacher Marla Rickards’ Pals-Plus classroom.
During Stand Tall Week, the pre-teens learned how to stand up and stand together for good.
A rubber band activity helped teach students that they are stretched physically, emotionally, and academically when they stand alone, and can snap.
“When they combined multiple bands, students saw they could be stretched more with the right support,” Rickards said.
Pals, Plus, and drama students presented daily lessons with facts and hands on activities to communicate how students can change the world when they personally change their hearts.
“We will be able to truly stomp out bullying with confidence, awareness, and the heart to make a difference,” Rickard said.
By Kelli Gile, Office of Community Resources
Buddies not bullies! Westhoff Elementary students join Mix It Up at Lunch Day activities.
Collegewood Elementary students stomp out bullying with kindness.
Suzanne Middle School students select kindness dares during National Bullying Prevention Month.