Hopkinton Middle School in Massachusetts, USA, quotes Giten on Acceptance in The Power of WE, which is a curriculum designed and implemented by the Middle School Counseling Department. The mission of the Hopkinton Publich Schools is to learn, create, and achive together.
New in 2015-16, its goal is to introduce students to a new theme each year which will challenge them to think about themselves and the world around them. This year’s theme,ACCEPTANCE, strives to educate HMS students about the acceptance of and respect for others in our community and our world.
The Power of WE: Make a positive (+) difference today!The Power of WE is a curriculum designed and implemented by the Middle School Counseling Department. New in 2015-16, its goal is to introduce students to a new theme each year which will challenge them to think about themselves and the world around them. This year’s theme,ACCEPTANCE, strives to educate HMS students about the acceptance of and respect for others in our community and our world. HMS students were introduced to this new theme by their grade level Counselor in September.The Power of WE curriculum consists of three elements: weekly Google Slide presentations that include a 2-5 minute media clip followed by a take away lesson and weekly challenge; classroom lessons delivered by the School Counselors on a trimester basis; and school-wide events and activities. Following the theme of acceptance, this year’s curriculum is broken into three sub-themes that look at acceptance from a community level, a peer level and a self level. First semester focused on diversity (community level) – the acceptance and respect for people from other races, religions, abilities, etc. Now, currently in second trimester, our focus has moved towards peer acceptance as we discuss bullying and healthy friendships. Finally, during the third trimester, the curriculum will turn to the importance of self-acceptance.The first trimester kick-off of Power of We was deemed a success by students, teachers and administration. Students report looking forward to the videos on Monday mornings as a great way to start their week, giving them something to think about as they go through their routines. Many teachers have taken the weekly themes and found ways to integrate them into already planned lessons, propelling students to find ways to meld the classroom with “real life.” Behavior changes are already being noticed across the school by students and staff, demonstrating that the program’s ideas are taking root.The Power of WE curriculum meets several standards required through the Massachusetts Comprehensive Health Curriculum Framework. Specifically, Standard 7.7 states that by the end of Grade 8 students will “Recognize the positive contribution of character traits (such as tolerance, honesty, self-discipline, respectfulness, and kindness) to relationships, the benefit of which include understanding and respecting individual differences, and the detrimental effect of prejudice (such as prejudice on the basis of race, gender, sexual orientation, class, or religion) on individual relationships and society as a whole.”We are very proud to have introduced this program this year and have already begun working on next year’s installment of the program. Weekly presentations can be found below. We encourage families to review these presentations with their children at home and have discussions about how the messages resonate in other areas of their lives. In addition to accessing the current week’s presentation, the Power of WE webpage also provides an opportunity to preview the next week’s presentation, as well as past presentations using the archived link at the right of the page. you have any questions, please feel free to contact your grade level School Counselor.When we stop judging others, and ourselves, our hearts begin to open.~ Swami Dhyan Giten
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