Newby recognizes Unity Day with positive messages
Posted on 10/25/2017

Students in Kathy Valach’s fifth grade class got creative with positivity messages today in honor of national Unity Day.

Created to create a culture to prevent bullying, Unity Day is a way to build awareness about safe and supportive schools and communities by wearing the color orange.

At Newby, students decided to use some craft materials recently donated from McMinnville’s JOANN Fabric & Craft store to create splashes of orange that they would share with others school-wide, because “we wanted to count everyone in” and invite everyone in the school to participate.

With some of the work done at home, and some in class, the students designed orange ribbon pins, bracelets, rings for others to wear to show support for Unity Day.

The students were also inspired by the book “Wonder,” by R.J. Palacio, a story about a boy with a facial deformity who is teased at school. “Being mean is a kind of bullying,” explained one student, while others said they won’t judge others by how they look and want to let people know that their school is a safe place.

Using a glue gun, staples and tape, the students got creative and designed whatever piece they thought would work best. Each piece included a message like “Be Kind” or “Choose Kind” or “No Bullying” and many of the pieces were written in Spanish, “Sé Amable” or “Elije lo Amable” or “No al Bullying.”

Finally, the students organized a delivery schedule to other classrooms. To personalize the experience, they chose classrooms with siblings of the students or teachers the students had previously had.

“It’s been a sea of positivity in here today!” said Valach.