Greenhill’s Core Values of Honor, Respect, and Compassion can be found in the unlikeliest of places.
I was invited this week to visit Vince Mikulski’s Web Design class in the Upper School. A small group of students – Drew, Bo, Brad, and Isha – each take on a defined role in the web design process. They gain real-world experience by providing design expertise to a variety of clients.
This year, however, the web design class’ efforts can be seen close to home. They have taken on the responsibility of enhancing the existing web site entitled http://abcstopbullying.org, the brainstorm of Greenhill tenth graders Sarah Bates and Kayla Ellis. Last summer, Sarah and Kayla took the initiative to create a plan to minimize bullying and its detrimental effects in the North Texas community. Sarah and Kayla developed a website, designed and printed flyers, spoke to DISD summer camp groups, and sold green ribbons to signify their commitment to healthy, kind, bully free schools. They determined that their website needed expert attention, and they turned to Mr. Mikulski’s class.
I was asked to visit the class to provide background information on bullying and anti-bullying programs. That included connecting the students to latest research, relevant literature such as Barbara Colorosa’s The Bully, the Bullied, and the Bystander, and the work of Greenhill’s own Anti-Bullying Task Force. The students will take this information and incorporate it into their design.
The team working on Sarah’s and Kayla’s website has decided to use a chalkboard theme and will create ways to tell relevant stories through animation, photographs, and videos. At the conclusion of the trimester, one member of the team will continue updating the website through a tutorial with Mr. Mikulski or they will train Sarah and Kayla to do so.
Greenhill’s Core Values at work! Honor, Respect, and Compassion infuse the efforts of everyone involved in this project. From the inception of this idea last summer to spreading an anti-bullying message through the powerful voice of the web, students and faculty are learning together under the umbrella of Respect. Their collaborative learning signifies their commitment to the kind of world they want to live in, both here at Greenhill and beyond. Think how far their influence will be felt.