By: Pamela Stern
Abe Stark Primary School’s (PS 346) students participated in a school-wide initiative called Respect For All. New York City designated February 1st through 5th as Respect For All week. During the school day students in all grades attended the online assembly on different days designated by their grade.
School Counselors, Ms. Greene and Mr. Vertus presented this assembly to the students. The emphasis of this was to explain to the students how they could show respect to each other. After the slide presentation, students were sent to breakout rooms where they were able to socialize with students from other classes.
The series of slides that the students viewed and discussed were:
• What is Bullying?
• How to Stop the Bullying
• What is Discrimination?
• What is Prejudice?
• Acceptance of Others
The school counselors discussed each of these topics with the students and asked the students if they understood the meanings. Students were asked if they ever experienced any of this kind of behavior and what did they do to bring it to an end. During the session of third, fourth, and fifth graders, one student, Theresa said, “Bullying is when someone does something mean to someone.” Alissa said that she was bullied while playing Roblox, and she told the person to stop and they said a bad word to her.
When the remote learning students were asked what do they miss about school, they said a number of things:
• School at home has distractions
• They miss doing projects
• The work is more difficult
• They feel left out
• They miss their friends
• They miss the Spring Creek After School Program
After the active discussion on each of those topics, the students were placed into breakout rooms where they were able to see some of their friends and meet new ones too. While in the breakout rooms, the students were asked, “If you could change the world what would it look like?” One student answered, “I would get rid of racism, and make it so the world would be kind,” said Aiden.
Even Spring Creek After School Program staff members agree about the success of the program. Randi Ray, Assistant Site Supervisor of Spring Creek After School Program enjoyed being a part of the Respect For All assembly. “I loved it. I believe it is a great idea for the school to hold these types of assemblies with the children, it gives them a chance to explore positive characteristics and how to use certain techniques online and in school. Also, I love how it is encouraged for the children to mix and mingle with other children and teachers they probably don’t get to meet often,” said Ray.
Screenshots by: Pamela Stern