Second-Graders Make Anti-Bullying Video That Teaches How to be a Friend
I have previously blogged about kids who are trying to encourage other kids to stop bullying. I told you about Middleton City Schools’ Facebook public service announcements in response to one of their own students being bullied, Michael and Marissa who write and sing songs about bullying, Alye Pollack’s silent video about being bullied, and LaNiyaha Bailey who wrote a book about bullying. Well, I just read about this wonderful new group of young people who are trying to get their message out to kids, too.
Students at Great Oaks Elementary School in Round Rock, Texas tackled class projects on the issues of bullying, cyberbulling, and friendship this year. One of those classrooms, Tammy Joy’s second grade class, decided to put their creativity to work in order to remind students at their school about the Golden Rule and what it means to be a good friend.
The students from Tammy’s class spent the school year creating a video using claymation to teach their fellow students how to stand up to bullies and how to be a good friend. Their teacher said that making the video has had a positive effect on her students and on her classroom.
“They are honestly the sweetest class I have ever had, and I honestly think, you know, I started out with a really great group of kids, but I really think that us talking about it every single week about what great friendship looked like, and knowing that we had this project coming up, I really think it made a big difference,” Tammy told KXAN News.
Amazingly, the students wrote the whole story for a video that goes about 15 minutes long. The bullied character in the video is a clay cat that is new to Great Oaks Elementary School and is having problems fitting in because she has only one ear, and the bullies of the school are making fun of her because she is different.
Morgan Losabia, who plays the voice of the cat, told KXAN, “Everyone’s different, but, like, you don’t treat them by the outside.” Which pretty much summarizes what the children learned by making this video: to be a good friend, means accepting each other’s differences.
Tammy went on to explain, “There’s a lot of different personalities within our classroom, and we actually had some students who had a little bit of some special needs that were addressed. But when we looked at each other as friends, you know, we really saw that they were all alike, and we had more similarities than we did differences.”
The film, which utilizes clay figures and stop-motion filming, emphasizes the importance of treating others with compassion and teaches the lesson that “the only way to make a friend is to be a friend.” At the end, the characters talk about some very important life skills, such as flexibility, compassion, friendship, patience, courage, initiative, sharing, and the use of “I care” language.
The class met at a Regal Cinema in a local mall for a private showing of their finished video, called, “How to Make a Friend in Just One Day” on the big screen. And when students return to school in the fall, the whole school will have the opportunity to see this adorable video with its powerful message.
Great job, Great Oaks Elementary School, Tammy Joy, and this tremendously talented and incredibly sensitive second grade class! Your message could not be more perfect! Thank you for sharing it with me, and I will share it with my readers, as well.
And keep spreading the message: to make a friend means accepting each other’s differences and being a good friend all the time.