Fall “Stand Up” Campaign Focuses on Acts of Kindness

Oct 27, 2017

At YISS, we strive to be proactive and intentional about establishing and maintaining a safe and caring school culture of acceptance, tolerance, and respect. Each year, we conduct a school-wide bullying awareness campaign, called Stand Up. The campaign is run in two parts, for two weeks in the fall and two weeks in the spring.

This year, the elementary school used the Stand Up Campaign as a time to focus on building confidence and having positive self-esteem. Confident kids who believe they are valuable will see the value in those around them and have the courage to stand up for themselves and others. Class lessons for students in 3rd-5th grade provided more information about how to recognize bullying and report it accurately to an adult. Each class received a “Brag Bag” to encourage students to brag about any outstanding acts of kindness and compassion they saw. Students in kindergarten-2nd grade learned about feeling confident and having positive self-esteem. They worked on identifying feelings and finding qualities they liked about themselves.

The middle school continued using the character of Gandalf from The Lord of the Rings to explore what it meant to be a Guardian by focusing on having a healthy community. The WEB leaders filmed skits of Gandalf struggling to know how to treat his fellow classmates and the Guardian coming alongside him to help guide him in the right direction. Students got to post comments on Schoology about how they saw other classmates acting like the Guardian. Sixth graders made posters with their WEB leaders to remind everyone how to build a healthy community. Seventh grader Irene Y. and 8th graders Katie H., Balqis M., and Naomi L. won their respective grade level poster contests for representing how students should treat one another.

This year in the high school, the Stand Up Campaign was divided into four sections -- Stand Up for Yourself, Stand Up for Your Friends, Stand Up for Your Community, and Stand Up for Others. For each part, students were challenged to make their actions count and to show others what they were doing to Stand Up. To Stand Up for themselves, students were charged to fill out an "I am" statement to reflect their identities or who they aspire to be. Some noted that they were "invincible," "open-minded," and "capable." Next, students were treated to a totally tubular lip-sync video by the HS administration. Their challenge to Stand Up for Friendship was to sing or lip-sync to a song about friendship with their squad. Afterward, students were asked to look around them and note the random acts of kindness they were doing and receiving from others in the YISS community. The Guardian's shield was filled with 25 random acts of kindness, and the school was filled with many more. Lastly, students were invited to look outside of themselves and their community to Stand Up for Others. HS clubs were assigned with the task of creating action pledges -- how they were planning to help those who needed support and allies. Clubs have written action pledges to benefit the homeless, animal shelters, and persons who are deaf, among others.

YISS students have done some amazing work during the two-week Stand Up Campaign, and everyone is excited to see what will happen for Stand Up in February!

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