Building communities by learning from each other
Janet’s class came up with the idea of grouping together older students with younger ones from various grades to increase understanding and reduce bullying. In pairs, the students interviewed each other about what they find challenging in their life. When they were done, they each made something for the other – for example, a bracelet or a portrait.
Her class next paired up with their kindergarten reading buddies and read them Rick Hansen’s story, Boy in Motion
. The kindergarten students drew pictures of what they thought a Difference Maker looked like. Each day, students shared inspirational quotes during the school announcements.
As Janet’s class worked through weeks 1 -3 of the Difference Maker lessons, she presented a proposal to the principal to hold a school-wide event. The school celebrated completing the lessons with a Difference Maker Day and arranged for a RHF Ambassador presentation
with Joel Dembe.
are people with disabilities across Canada who share their personal stories of overcoming barriers. Students have first-hand contact with someone with a disability and can engage in conversations about how we all have the potential to make a difference.
Joel recently retired from high-performance competition after representing Canada at the Paralympic level. He works with RBC as part of the RBC Olympians Program and with Tennis Canada as a coach and ambassador, promoting inclusivity within the sport.
“For me the biggest impression was having a RHF Ambassador come to the school. Joel Dembe was a wonderful speaker who emphasized the fact that ‘even kids’ can make a difference,” says Janet.