Throughout the district, elementary school students focused on character building while promoting an atmosphere free from bias and name-calling and celebrating kindness. Sponsored nationally by 60 partnership organizations, No Name Calling Week sets a platform to end name-calling and criticism and to foster an environment in which bullying is not tolerated in schools.
At Forest Avenue, students participated in classroom discussions about being an upstander based on Carol McCloud’s “Have You Filled a Bucket Today?: A Guide to Daily Happiness for Kids.” Students wore mismatched socks to celebrate individual differences and shared kind words by writing compliment cards. Each class read Dr. Lisa Roth’s “Stand Up” and created a schoolwide unity chain to symbolize student connections and the ability to ignite a reaction of kindness.
A Garden of Kindness, planted with decorated flowers of kind words and thoughts, cropped up on classroom doors at John F. Kennedy Elementary. In addition, each student colored a picture of a bee to symbolize “being” an upstander and a person who will assist in making the campus a bully-free zone.
Each student at Santapogue was given a No Name-Calling Week pledge to sign and take home. Like Forest Avenue, classroom teachers read “Stand Up” to their students, followed by Upstander Day, in which students wore blue and gold to signify that bucket filler behavior is integral to the school culture. The school also hosted the popular character education performance group, Power of One. Using multicolored boxes and student involvement, the actors drove home the message that bullying cannot be tolerated.
At South Bay Elementary School, students took the opportunity to write messages of kindness on the graffiti wall outside of the main office. Students and staff added messages daily, as did visitors to the school.
Each day, students at Tooker Elementary read a pledge to stop name-calling and promote kindness. The students participated in theme-based days, such as wearing caps to symbolize placing a “cap on name-calling” and mismatched clothes to celebrate each other’s differences. Sports apparel day also symbolized everyone’s being on the same team.
The week was a success as district students came together in support of the anti-bullying campaign. This sense of unity helped to create an environment in which all students can comfortably be themselves.