On the Journey
news reel: stories of People, places, and learning AT Aspen Country Day School
ACDS students get expert help in learning how to build healthy relationships
By Brenda Stockdale, head of Middle School at ACDS
Last week, Txell Pedragosa, program director of RESPONSE, met with Middle School students to teach them about healthy relationships. Txell solicited students' input about what they look for in a friend. Their responses included words like trust, understanding, loyalty, inclusion, safety, kindness, honesty, and listening.
Txell shared with students the difference between conflict and bullying. She emphasized that conflict is important for growth in relationships: the people involved disagree about something and work together to find a solution. Bullying, on the other hand, is ongoing, damages self esteem and involves a power differential which makes people feel unsafe.
In addition, students learned about three different communication styles: aggressive, passive, and assertive. Students discussed the warning signs of an unhealthy relationship, in which one person tries to exert control over the other, such as telling someone they can't hang out with other people in an effort to isolate them from their friends and family, looking at messages on someone's phone without permission, and threatening to end a relationship through coercion. Students shared ideas in small groups and then contributed to a wider conversation.
Here at Aspen Country Day School, we're excited to bring in professionals from the community to teach our students about important health and wellness topics this year. If you have programming suggestions or contacts who might be interested in working with our students, please contact Morgan Henschke or Brenda Stockdale. Thanks!