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Red Ribbon Week School Assembly Grabs Students' Attention

(Part of a series of articles that will be posted from some of our assembly companies or schools who have used one of our business listings)
As parents and educators we all want to teach our elementary age students the importance of lessons that can keep them from harm. We often will say things like: "Make sure you wear your helmet", "Look both ways before you cross the street", "Never get in a car with a stranger", "Eat your vegetables" and on and on. How often, though, do we feel like our words are falling on deaf ears? Let's be honest; kids are swayed by friends, peer pressure, what they see on T.V. and what they listen to. It is extremely difficult to raise children that will remember on a regular basis what we tell them. It is even more difficult to have a child actually want to do what is good for them!
This is where the school assembly can make a difference. How often parents will say "Johnny is an angel for the babysitter, grandma, etc., but we are having serious problems with him at home he just won't listen". You see, human nature is often such that we will take advice from others when we won't listen to our parents or teachers. When you bring someone into your school that the students think are "cool" that same message you have been cramming down their throats with no success is now accepted and behavior can be changed.
We witnessed this recently when we had a professional bicycle stunt team visit our school. We were having trouble with students riding bikes to school but not following the proper "rules of the road" and some were even not wearing helmets (which is against the law). Well after these pro bike riders wowed the students with amazing stunts (all the while wearing the proper safety gear) and then spoke to them about their training and safety regimens and how cool it was to put stickers on their helmets, it wasn't long before it was now "cool" for our students to wear their helmets (and put stickers all over them!).
They also motivated the students to chase their dreams and to not be swayed by peer pressure. Overall it was one of the most impacting school assemblies we ever had at our school. The team shared personal stories that really grabbed the attention of the students by using humor, experiences of their time in elementary school, and what they had to overcome to reach their professional goals.
The key was that there was an actual change in behavior. Imagine how 40 minutes out of class time at a fun assembly turned the tide from months of pleading and preaching. We now have at least 2 assemblies per school year and rotate the themes that we feel are important for our students. We then follow-up after the program to reinforce the messages shared. Our students have responded well and we have add many comments from pleased parents as well!
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