We also had time in our classroom to talk about bullying. I decided to use what I learned from my summer reading (Bullying Hurts: Teaching Kindness Through Read Alouds and Conversations by Laminack and Wadsworth). We read Same, Same But Different (Kostecki-Shaw), Whoever You Are (Mem Fox), and Skin Again (bell hooks) and had a classroom discussion about how we have so much in common! Laminack and Wadsworth state, "As human beings, we are more alike than different. Those things that make each of us human are present in every other human across the globe." Truly, we are all the same, same, but different! I also led them in an activity where I had them think about the many ways we've been hurt by someone and each time someone bravely shared it out, I wrinkled up the new, fresh piece of notebook paper in my hands. I then continued by saying that sometimes the people who offend us or hurt us apologize or we try to make ourselves feel better, but the piece of paper is never truly new ever again.
Afterwards, we went to build confidence in ourselves with Master Lee from the ATA Marshall Arts studio in Manchester. He helped us recognize that bullies tend to pick on those who don't look confident and proud of who they are. Students left with a little winded after following some of the exercises, but with a few strategies of how to look and feel confident!
Our final rotation was in the cafeteria with Mrs. Miller and Mr. Shelton. We had an opportunity to watch some scenarios from the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program DVD and think about some of the ways that we would have responded instead (or even likewise)! After the scenarios, students were able to post the areas in our school that they found to be a "hotspot", but more importantly provide a solution for the problems that they posted.
All in all, our Robinson Roadrunners are ready to start the trend in being a friend!