By Hayley Goldblatt Posted April 18, 2012
On Tuesday, April 10 students gathered in the old gym to work on making their own chain reaction. The students were challenged to start their own chain reaction by starting to treat people differently than they had. From the beginning, students were asked to keep anything and everything they heard a secret.
Students participated in a number of activities in getting to know other people. One activity the students participated in was sitting still and listening to someone that they didn’t know for a minute, which could prove quite difficult to some people. Another activity the kids participated in was Shark Attack, where students got into groups of four and had to balance all of the group members on a foot by foot piece of cloth and they had to stay there until the speakers blew the whistle. The purpose of this activity and the other one was to show the students how in a competitive setting, they would step out of their comfort zone but when it came to just sit and talking, most students felt awkward sitting knee to knee and holding hands with someone they don’t know.
Kaila Tuck, a sophomore who went to the Rachel’s Challenge Training Day said, “I think that people will actually learn to not judge people, and I think that if people really try then they will be able to stick to it.”
Some of the themes mentioned at the work day were taking off the mask and being the real you, talking about things instead of keeping them inside and treating people with equality. It was surprising to see who had their own demons to fight, especially when you saw them at school and everything seemed fine. Every single one of the girls, when asked if they ever thought they were not pretty or beautiful, crossed the line. Every single one of them, even the adults.
Mrs. Debbie Watts said, “I think it went really well. We had 62 students present and we could have had as many as 100, but I thought 62 was a good number out of about 952 who wanted to take the training. I thought the numbers were good. We had enough adult facilitators to help with the training. I thought it was very helpful and the students I spoke to thought it was very helpful as well.”
Overall, this activity was well worth the time that it took. People promised to start treating others better, but the real challenge will be keeping that promise.