Students at Lewis & Clark Elementary today joined more than one million other students across the country to help break down social and racial barriers by participating in the 12th annual Mix It Up at Lunch Day.
The event, launched by the Southern Poverty Law Center’s Teaching Tolerance project in 2002, encourages students to sit with someone new in the cafeteria for just one day. Many schools plan similar barrier-busting activities throughout the day. Some use the event to kick off a yearlong exploration of social divisions.
Cafeterias are the focus of Mix It Up because that’s where a school’s social boundaries are most obvious. Thousands of schools nationwide participated in the event this year.
“Mix It Up is a positive step that schools can take to help create learning environments where students see each other as individuals and not just as members of a separate group,” said Teaching Tolerance Director Maureen Costello. “When people step out of their cliques and get to know someone, they realize just how much they have in common.”
At Lewis & Clark Elementary students are expected to be Safe, Respectful and Responsible. As part of our culture of positivity we are striving to give kids opportunities to build meaningful relationships while learning about important concepts like empathy and tolerance. The Honor Society students worked together with the School Counselor to plan and implement Mix-it-up at lunch day at Lewis & Clark. When kids develop relationships with each other they are less likely to bully and bystanders are more likely to take action. Mix-it-up at lunch day gives kids an opportunity to meet someone new and is one more way we continue to work on our positive school culture.