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Tuesday January 23, 2018 at 3:27pm Age: 25 days
Category: Middle School, District

NO NAME-CALLING WEEK: FIGHTING BACK WITH KINDNESS AND COURAGE


"How many of you have been called names?" "How many of you have called someone a name?" Students and adults rose their hands when Assistant Principal Stephen Caldwell posed these questions as an introduction to “No Name-Calling” school assemblies. 

“Kindness in action” was the theme for this year’s No Name-Calling Week, and MVMS celebrated with assemblies for each grade level, and special morning announcements. 

Before the screening of a video that vividly depicts one child’s experience with name-calling, Mr. Caldwell challenged students to picture that child as one of the five most important people in their lives. "How would you like her to be treated?" he asked.

The student in the video is tagged with name-calling, stick-on notes throughout her school day and grows increasingly downcast. Some of her peers act as mere bystanders, until one student stands up for her, and others join in.

Mr. Caldwell discussed name-calling via text and social media, and encouraged students to reject this form of emotional bullying, and stand up for those who become its target. To counter the negative, long-term impact of name-calling, students were asked to name kind, confidence-building words they can use to make a better day for their peers and themselves.

Seventh grader Matthew Faison found the assembly a good reminder that it doesn’t cost anything to show kindness to others. Emmy Stewart was inspired by the idea of standing up against name-calling, while standing with the person who becomes a target. She believes it can help stop bullying. 

In fact, studies show that more than half of bullying situations (57 percent) stop when a peer intervenes on behalf of the student being bullied. (Hawkins, Pepler, and Craig, 2001, pdf)

School-based bullying prevention programs, such as No Name-Calling Week and PBIS, have shown to decrease bullying by up to 25 percent. (McCallion and Feder, 2013, pdf)