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Sir James Dunn Public School Takes a Stand Against Sexual Violence

Thursday, March 2, 2017 - 14:49

With the help of Draw-the-Line, Egale Canada Human Rights Trust, and White Ribbon Canada, Ophea’s Campaign Messengers: Taking a Stand! Is an initiative that supports engaging children and youth in conversations focusing on healthy relationships, consent, respect and equality.  Educators and students are encouraged to register their “school action team” to receive supports from Ophea in pursuit of helping raise awareness, supporting inclusion, and fostering healthy relationships while making connections to the H&PE curriculum.

This blog highlights the great story of Sir James Dunn Public School’s action team and their effort to Take a Stand! to help prevent sexual violence.

Their story…

We call our campaign, Hear with your heart. We’ve presented a number of times so far at our school and our team has done an amazing job! The students were very open and receptive to the message of acceptance and understanding. We think part of the success was that it came from their peers (the action team).

In the grade 6 & 7 classrooms we talked out gender pronouns, transgender and trans fluidity, using Egale’s Genderbread person to show how sexuality and gender are not the same thing.  We also worked with the Draw-the-Line postcards. The conversations were amazing!

We repeated this with the grade 7 & 8 classes. After the presentation, one classroom teacher continued the conversation by reading Branded by the Pink Triangle - a story of the treatment of homosexual men during the Nazi regime and the history of the pink triangle symbol. In the other classroom the teacher read The Boy Who Wore Dresses as a read aloud.

The team also read the story The Crayon to one of the grade 7/8 classes. This opened the conversation for discussions around being transgender or gender fluid, and stereotypes around labeled genders. They then cut up a large drawing of a butterfly and gave a piece to each of the students to colour.

Our team then presented to and had conversations with the grade 4&5's and 6&7.  We read the story Red, and then had discussions on transgender and homosexuality, and how we can look one way on the outside but actually be quite different on the inside. Each student was given a piece of paper to colour from either a large cut out boat (based on the story) or of a butterfly, which were to represent that we are all different. The boat and butterflies have been displayed on our team bulletin board which further supports conversation in the school.

Sir James Dunn Public School
Wawa, Ontario

Is your school registered for Campaign Messengers: Taking a Stand!? Learn more and register today! (This project is available in English and French) 

Already registered?  Join our upcoming webinar How to Draw-the-Line, taking place March 9th at 4pm EST.  Register now!