May 6, 2013
A group of Woodbrook Elementary School students is working on a special project to put an end to bullying and social isolation. In this week's Stephanie's Heroes, the 4th grade Destination Imagination team is hoping to bring students together with the help of some new creative activities.
"We decided to do this because we thought that our school was having social isolation and we thought that we needed it to stop and so we decided to do this, said Arianna DeBoer, Destination Imagination Student.
Arianna DeBoer and the other members on her Destination Imagination team have been working hard for months brain storming ideas, creating special teacher kits and making a documentary to tell their story.
"In our movie that we made, we became super heroes because we're kind of like saving the day," said Jordyn Orn, Destination Imagination Student.
Their goal is to end social isolation and make sure every student has a friend.
During morning announcements, they challenged other students to take part. Children were each given an index card displaying a different shape. Students then had to find someone with the matching shape and sit with them during lunch.
"We hope that that would make people have new partners so they might be able to get to know those people and have new friends," said DeBoer.
Students weren't the only ones impacted by this project. Destination Imagination students also made teachers a kit filled with all sorts of activities to encourage students to get to know each other.
"I think it opened the door to conversations. I think a lot of times kids have their friends and they're happy to hang out with their friends all the time alone and I think it opened up the comfort level to just explore different friendships and be involved with kids they may not necessarily associate with on a daily basis," said Christine Kelly, 4th Grade Teacher, Woodbrook Elementary School.
While this project might just be something students are working on in the fourth grade, their team co-manager says the lessons they've learned will last a lifetime.
"Destination Imagination is about creativity so this project was like a double bonus for us to help children feel included. A part of that will carry through to middle school and beyond," said Christa Orn, Destination Imagination Co-Manager.
Woodbrook's Destination Imagination team has been doing well in competition at the regional and state level and will soon be heading to the global competition in a few weeks. It's going to cost the team a little more than $6,000 to attend so they're asking the community for some help. If you'd like to make a donation, you can do so at Woodbrook Elementary School.