There is no other way to put it, today was hard.

Every time I turned around there was teasing, name calling, screaming and some down right sad actions happening. For some reason this type of behavior is often catching. After morning outside time, we had a meeting to talk about what was happening. Everyone was open to talking and sharing ideas about possible ways to make it better. We talked about how we are the elders of the school and how we need to help take care of each other as well as be gentle with the younger kids in the school. And how as we get older, we can start thinking about the way others may be reacting to our actions and how others may feel when we purposely set out to tease or hurt someone else.

The day progressed but there seemed to be high tension and anxiety throughout the morning and early afternoon. I tried to back off and give everyone some space. I didn’t want to become overbearing and repetitive but I could feel the entire room on edge. As afternoon approached and we waited for music to start, once again the teasing resurfaced. Some of the kids felt like they were being laughed at and made fun of. I gathered everyone and said that I wasn’t even feeling safe in this space. Some kids were crying – feeling like the noise and teasing was too deafening. I don’t want to be the constant voice of overbearing AUTHORITY and peace. But today it took me raising my voice to achieve seriousness. We talked about ways that we could help each other find this place of peace, calm and respect for each other. Even Katy, the music teacher had to be uncharacteristically firm.

This often happens, this reaction to the stress of the first weeks of school. It also often happens with the first big rains of the season, since we’ve all been thrown into another dimension. We’ll keep talking, sharing and helping each other find our caring hearts.

We have the love within us, we just need to share it with each other.

To a better tomorrow.