EASTON, Md. — Some words and images can hurt, a point students at Ss. Peter and Paul Elementary School in Easton, Md., tried to get across through two projects this spring — using words and images.
As part of the school’s anti-bullying program, “Erase Name-Calling Week” was expanded, with the idea being introduced as a New Year’s resolution, second-grade teacher Pat Egeberg said. Among the projects the students took part in this spring were a poetry-writing contest and a campaign to design t-shirts to get across the anti-bullying message.
“The theme, ‘erase name-calling,’ worked well in conjunction with our Olweus Bullying Prevention Program, so we extended it,” Egeberg said.
The theme of the poems depended on the grade level, while the shirts conveyed messages of friendship or anti-bullying sentiment.
The pre-kindergarten through first grades wrote class poems, while students in grades two through eight worked individually. Poems were submitted in many forms, including acrostic, haiku and rap. The poetry has been displayed on the hallway bulletin boards or doors, and one poem from each class has been designated a blue-ribbon winner. (Three of the poems are online at thedialog.org.)
The t-shirts also reflected the anti-bullying/friendship theme. Several of the students wore their shirts on May 24, with the winning entries selected by the principal, Connie Webster, and art teacher Rebecca Wheatley.
Egeberg said enthusiasm among the students was high, particularly with the t-shirt contest. “The variety of designs showed that the students put a lot of thought into how they could express the theme creatively. Each activity is unique, so it’s not like one big, long activity that might lead to less excitement.”
This is the first year for the erase name-calling activities at Ss. Peter and Paul, although it has had an anti-bullying program in the past.
SSPP student poems for “Erase Name-Calling”
Name Calling Rap
by Jonathan Singlestad, seventh grade
So you want to go diss on someone that you don’t like?
Well I’m telling you it hurts them and it’s not right.
Put yourself in their shoes and understand their plight.
It’s circling around and around their head every day and night.
You’re ruining their lives stop making up excuses.
For all the pain you’re causing, those marks and bruises.
It’s really a shame that you’re playing this cruel game.
The pain you’re inflicting when you’re shouting out mean names.
Think about your actions before you give their feelings another shove.
Stop spreading rumors start spreading the message of love.
Friendship means to me:
by Abigial Silva, third grade
Hours of laughter!
Old or new, a friend is true!
Never alone when you have a friend.
Encourages me to be my best.
Sticks around in good times and in bad.
Tells the truth.
You’ve got a friend in me!”
Never be a Bully to Others
by Emily Zwobot, sixth grade
Act kind and not mean.
Many people should not judge but love.
Even if someone bullies you do not bully.
Caring is better than name calling.
Always appreciate others.
Live without being a name caller.
Like others and you will not be bullied.
I will not bully others.
Never say mean names.
God would not want bullying to be.