We are pleased to report that the Where Everybody Belongs (WEB) peer mentorship program has made significant progress since the start of the school year. Our eighth-grade mentors have been actively engaged in providing support and guidance to their sixth-grade mentees, and we have received many questions from seventh-grade students who want to be mentees next year.
As part of the program, coordinators have organized various activities to help build relationships. These activities include icebreakers, team-building exercises, and other interactive activities. More recently WEB leaders initiated a lesson called “Lighten Up the Load,” which focuses on the importance of making people feel good and not putting them down.
This lesson started with a sixth-grade volunteer putting an empty backpack on and doing physical exercises which was easy. But as they openly discussed relatable bullying and negative experiences, the backpack was loaded with books and papers representing hurtful messages. Next, the student was asked to do the same exercises wearing the heavy backpack which was very difficult. The mentors explained how difficult it can be to be successful when things are weighing you down. The lesson put things in perspective.
Moving forward, WEB leaders will continue with current activities and lessons, while also exploring new ways to further enhance the program. It has great potential to make a positive impact on our students, and the middle school administration is committed to ensuring its success.