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Friday September 7, 2018 at 1:19pm Age: 319 days
Category: Intermediate, District


Opening day at Minisink Valley Intermediate School featured the first-ever morning assembly reminding students of the importance of being kind and to introduce them to the school’s new “Give Me 5” attention signal.

Before going to their new classrooms, students went directly to the auditorium with songs as Pharrell Williams’ “Happy” and American Authors’ “Best Day of My Life” welcoming their arrival. Very quickly, beach balls filled the air, creating a festive air.

Faculty and staff greeted third, fourth and fifth-graders wearing hunter green t-shirts featuring two simple but important words: “Choose Kind.”

“Every day when you walk into this building, you have many choices,” said Principal Paul Dombal. “The very most important, positive choice you will make at our school is to be kind.”

To reinforce that, students were shown a video called “Kindness: A Motivational Short,” created by the Aspen Academy in Colorado.

Afterward, Mr. Dombal asked students to repeat the chant students yelled in the video: “1-2-3… Kindness, 4-5-6 …Together!”

The sound of their chant probably could have been heard at the high school.

Mr. Dombal also introduced students to the new way teachers will expect to get their attention. Now, teachers will raise all five fingers on their hands and say “Give Me 5.” When teachers do this, students now know the teacher is requiring the following:

  • Eyes on me.
  • Mouth is silent.
  • Ears are listening.
  • Hands are empty.
  • Body is still. 

"This is a really simple way your teachers will ask for your attention," Mr. Dombal reinforced during the assembly, adding: "We’re so glad you’re back. We missed you all. We’re going to make this an absolutely fantastic year for all of you.”