Wisconsin News

Sparta elementary students celebrate 'Unity Day'

Learning How To Prevent Bullying

SPARTA, Wis. (WKBT) - Students at Lawrence-Lawson Elementary School in Sparta wore plenty of orange for 'Unity Day' Wednesday.

Students wore orange to show support for the anti-bullying movement and as a reminder to show compassion to each other.

Throughout the month of October, Lawrence-Lawson Elementary School students are receiving lessons on bullying prevention. The school's guidance counselor, Haley Lamprecht, goes into every classroom in the K-3 school, every other week. She hopes the students remember the lessons for longer than just the month of October.

"We really want them to know, you have the power to stop bullying," Lamprecht said.

Learning they have that power starts in kindergarten where students are given their toolbox full of tools to use to stop bullying before reporting it to an adult.

"The first tool is (say) please stop, I do not like it, the second tool is walk away, the third tool is find a new friend and the last tool is report to a grown up," kindergartner Isabella Welter said.

Students also discuss making new friends.

"If you go find a partner, the strength combines," first grader Arnold Aguilar said.

Students also learn to be respectful and not tease one another.

"Why do you think it's important that we stop bullying and we don't have any bullies? Then the world would be a better place," third grader Abigail Greeno said.

"You need to be respectful so everybody else is nice to you and they won't be mean to you," 3rd grader Noah Phillips said.

Throughout October  the focus is on bullying prevention, but staff hope students take these lessons and practice them throughout the year.

"Bullying has been an issue. We really want to prevent it. We don't want our students to come to school feeling like they're not safe so by preventing bullying and teaching the students how to prevent it, how to stop it in their own words and in their own actions and how to be a good friend is really powerful for them," Lamprecht said.

The students also created a long orange paper chain that goes throughout the school. On each link of the chain, they wrote what it means to be a good friend, including using kind words, not leaving people out of activities, and listening to and helping your friends.

The community in Sparta also have a bullying prevention committee. The "Spartan Way Leadership Team" focuses on making respectful, responsible and safe choices to ensure students and families feel safe in the community and in each school.

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