The Gay-Straight Alliance (GSA) club at Bracebridge’s Monck Public School created a wall of positivity to help anyone who walks through the school’s door celebrate themselves.
Grade six student Ellis Maleske helped to spearhead the project. At the school’s front entrance, there are walls full of hearts with positive messaging like “you can do this” and “slay.”
“I set up the table to promote kindness all throughout the school,” says Meleske. Already, she has spotted a lot of people taking part, even a few parents. “Even just a little bit of kindness can make someone’s day,” she says.
“It was really inspired by students,” says grade two french emersion teacher Adrienne Milner, who also helps lead the GSA.
The GSA features students in grades two to eight. “There’s a lot of strong voices,” says Milner. “We’re trying to provide a positive space for them to be themselves.”
Meleske and her fellow GSA members started the idea at the beginning of the school year. She says they’ve almost run out of space for more hearts. “It meant a lot to me to see people be able to write notes and have fun,” she says.
Milner says another idea the GSA is working towards is covering the shed towards the back of the school’s playground in positivity graffiti. She explains it often gets spray painted with negative messages. Milner explains the club has been working since the start of the year to come up with positive phrases that can be put on the shed.
The current plan is for the shed to be spray painted with the messages sometime in the summer.
Another long-term goal of the club is to add more 2SLGBTQIA+ books to the school’s library by the end of the year.