Kindness challenge promotes student unity

HELP+IN+THE+CLASSROOM%3A+Junior+Abbie+Brien+assists+English+teacher+Kimberly+Wiedmeyer+with+organizing+her+desk.+The+kindness+challenge+for+the+Silver+Stars+was+to+help+a+teacher+around+their+classroom.+
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Kindness challenge promotes student unity

HELP IN THE CLASSROOM: Junior Abbie Brien assists English teacher Kimberly Wiedmeyer with organizing her desk. The kindness challenge for the Silver Stars was to help a teacher around their classroom.

HELP IN THE CLASSROOM: Junior Abbie Brien assists English teacher Kimberly Wiedmeyer with organizing her desk. The kindness challenge for the Silver Stars was to help a teacher around their classroom.

Photo by: Corinne Piorkowski

HELP IN THE CLASSROOM: Junior Abbie Brien assists English teacher Kimberly Wiedmeyer with organizing her desk. The kindness challenge for the Silver Stars was to help a teacher around their classroom.

Photo by: Corinne Piorkowski

Photo by: Corinne Piorkowski

HELP IN THE CLASSROOM: Junior Abbie Brien assists English teacher Kimberly Wiedmeyer with organizing her desk. The kindness challenge for the Silver Stars was to help a teacher around their classroom.

Corinne Piorkowski, Entertainment Editor

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Silver Stars better Bowie community with weekly acts of thoughtfulness and service

In order to make Bowie a more welcoming community and school, Silver Stars and Star Dancers have begun kindness challenges that the girls on the team participate in weekly.

“Every week, Ms. Bilnoski and I give the Silver Stars and JV Star Dancers a kindness challenge to focus on,” dance director Emily Davis said. “They are a way to intentionally think about doing something kind for others.”

Before this year, the two teams had not participated in any specific kindness challenges, and this year is the first that they’re searching to better the school environment.

“I think that they’re good because if the kindness challenges come from Silver Stars, it gives us a good reputation,” first lieutenant Landry Case said.

As the kindness challenges have only started this semester, the teams are using the affectionate activities to spread love throughout the campus.

“When people hear about these, they may be inspired to do nice things themselves for others,” captain Jade Fattouh said. “That is our end goal with the kindness challenges.”

The kindness challenges were chosen by the team’s directors at the start of the school year.

“They were created by Ms. Bilnoski and I as a way to promote kindness throughout our community,” Davis said.

The JV Star Dancers are also  taking part in the challenges, but have their own set of ideas that they are trying out, similar to Silver Stars.

“My favorite so far has been saying ‘thank you’ to the custodians because I don’t think they hear that enough,” JV line sergeant Tipton Baugher said.

The teams come up with new challenges every week, and from there, spend the remainder of that week dedicating themselves to completing the task they’re given.

“I think they’re making our school more inclusive and gracious,” Baugher said. “It also brings the team closer together when we come up with the new ideas.”

The girls involved in the challenges are trying to better the everyday environment for every student at Bowie.

“I think these challenges are an innovative way to get our team involved with the school,” Fattouh said. “They are also used to make our school a better, happier place.”

Specifically, the kindness challenges have included holding open doors for people, sitting with new people at lunch, and writing thank-you notes to teachers.

“I loved writing thank-you notes to teachers,” Fattouh said. “I wrote to a freshman teacher; she really appreciated it, and I missed her.”

The directors of the dance teams intend to see an impact with the kindness challenges around the Bowie community.

“We think the challenges have been very successful,” Davis said. “We’ve noticed a difference in the girls’ interactions with each other and adults in their lives.”

Other leaders from the dance teams experience feelings about the challenges as well.

“They’re a great way to spread positivity throughout our campus,” junior officer Abbie Brien said. “It’s nice to see that organizations are making an effort to connect people at Bowie.”

Team leaders, like officers, are required to be a leading example for other members of the team.

“As an officer, I sometimes feel more pressured to set an example and participate in the challenges,” Brien said. “I think this is a positive effect that pushes me to better myself.”

In addition to impacting Bowie’s community, the kindness challenges strive to positively impact the girls on the teams as well.

“We hope to impact the individuals completing the challenges,” Davis said. “We hope that this positive behavior ends up becoming second nature among our girls.”

Even though some people may not know about the kindness challenges taking place, the teams’ intention is still to make someone’s day.

“I think the kindness challenges are doing a lot more than we think,” junior officer Lauryn Armstrong said. “I also think we have made a lot of people’s days.”

The kindness challenges have affected students in their regular school environment.

“I have seen people who used to sit alone at lunch who now have a regular group of people to sit with,” Armstrong said.

The dance organizations are not required to participate in kindness challenges for the school.

“Our ultimate goal is to create ripples of kindness through Bowie so that the positivity extends beyond us and our organizations,” Davis said.

The directors are using the kindness challenges as an extra positivity boost for all involved.

“We think the challenges have been very successful,” Davis said.“They have started showing more gratitude and appreciation towards others.”

The kindness challenges are intended to be positive activities for the girls on the teams and the students in school.

“It humbled me to see my teammates being a good example for the school,” Fattouh said. “It makes me proud to see my team doing good things for other people.”

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