Seeliger students concentrate on kindness
April 5, 2003
While war continues to rage in the Middle East, some Carson City students are working to make their school more peaceful through kindness.
“If we hurt other people’s feelings, they won’t want to be your friend anymore,” said Forrest Suarez, 9. “I don’t want anyone to be lonely.”
Seeliger Elementary School began a month-long campaign in March, “students for kindness.”
Each student signed a contract to be nice, they participated in essay and poster contests and teachers nominated their two kindest pupils.
The entire student body learned a rap, “Hugs not Slugs.”
They performed the new song during assemblies Friday morning and afternoon to culminate the month of kindness.
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“Hugs means to be kind and slugs means no bullies,” explained Amanda McCalla, 9. “We don’t want bullies. We want kindness always.”
Deputy Bill Rosario, accompanied by crime dog McGruff, spoke to the children about the negative effects of bullying.
He said people who are bullied or witness bullying often suffer from low self-esteem as a result.
And he had a warning for bullies.
“Bullies are four times more likely to be arrested by the time they are 30,” he cautioned. “Odds are showing you’re going to be arrested sooner or later.”
Members of the school’s parent-teacher-student association organized the campaign and the activities surrounding it.
Michele Cacioppo, vice president of the association, explained bullying extends beyond just calling names or hitting.
“It’s also excluding kids on the playground,” she said. “Telling them they can’t play with you or your friends is a form of bullying.”
Chief Deputy Steve Schuette said he hoped the lessons students learned during the month will last a lifetime.
“If we catch them at a young age and try to prevent bullying, hopefully it continues with them and they treat people with respect,” he said.