“I feel ...
“When you ...
“I would like for you to ...”
These are examples of what we learned to say when someone is being mean to us. For example, I could say this to someone who is being unkind: “I feel sad when you tell me that I can’t to do that because I know I can. I would like for you to stop making me feel down, and maybe we can try to be friends again.”
When we feel like there’s nothing we can do or say, we can just share our feelings and tell them that we want to be kind to one another. Sometimes, we feel peer pressure to be mean because a group is doing it. But if we are the ones to start being nice, others may follow. It makes everyone feel happy to be kind.
“Did you hear that Amy got an ‘F’ on her test, and then she cried?”
That is an example of gossiping. And that might not have been the real story. When gossip starts, it goes around and around, and it changes.
If you have ever played the game telephone, as we did, then you would know if you said, “Strawberries are yummy in my tummy,” it might come out in the end as “I like berries.” That’s the way gossip is.
We learned that gossiping can hurt each other, and we need to follow the golden rule, which is to treat others the way you want to be treated.
So we left Girls on the Run knowing that we should think about what we say before we say it, and we should be kind to one another. Everyone wants to be part of a group that is doing what’s right.
• Ansley Morlock is a fourth-grader at North Elementary School in Crystal Lake. For information on Girls on the Run, visit www.gotrnwil.org or email firstname.lastname@example.org.