Value Up is an initiative from the Walk a Mile program to raise the value of a human life in Junior high and high schools. We often say that schools don’t have a drug problem or a bullying problem as much as they have a value problem. If a student is destroying their life with drugs, alcohol, or destructive behavior, then ultimately they have a low value of themselves. Somewhere along the line they have lost sight of what they really are capable of and settled for a life that is less valuable to them and others. When we are presenting in a school and there are students that fit that criteria, we don’t assume they don’t know that behavior is bad for them, we assume they do and don’t care.
In the last ten years there has been a huge effort to bring awareness to the problem of bullying and social profiling. Again, if that is going on in a school we are presenting in, we don’t assume they don’t know bullying and social profiling is wrong because they do. We assume they do and don’t care. How do we get them to care? Value Up is attempting to raise the value of a human life in your school.
One of the main principles that drives R5 Productions is the concept that nothing is yours until you discover it. Our program is unique in the fact that we are not just shoveling information that we own, down the students throats, we are trying to be skillful about letting them discover these crucial values themselves right in the middle of our presentation or follow-up material. One of our goals for the Walk a Mile program is to leave you with tools to help further the impact of our message of respect and diversity and overall value of human life on your campus by helping them discover it.
We do realize that every school is different in the way they can implement a follow-up program so instead of creating a specific club concept or curriculum, we decided to put a variety of idea’s and methods that you could use in several different ways. From roll playing skits, a Walk a Mile video curriculum, a 21 day challenge for students who want to see their campus culture change and many other tools and ideas that fit into a classroom setting or homeroom activity setting etc. We are leaving it up to you to decide where best you can use these ideas. Over the years schools that we have presented in have been very creative on keeping our message alive. We want to share those ideas with you. Feel free to adapt them in any way you feel would be most effective in your particular school.
The Value Up follow-up kit includes:
We will give you six different posters with quotes of famous people on diversity. The bottom of the posters will be blank giving the students a chance to sign the posters as a pledge to value others and themselves. It’s a powerful reminder of what they learned the day Walk a Mile came to the school.
2. Value Up booklets
We will give you 25 copies of the booklet Value Up. It is a 21-day challenge for student to take a hard look at how they value themselves and others. It has questions for the students to answer after every day of reading. It starts out challenging them to value themselves and their uniqueness and then shifts to challenging them to have empathy and respect for the people around them. We feel, that if a student has a healthy respect for himself or herself it’s easier to value others. A lot of bullying comes out of a deep insecurity and lack of value for themselves.
3. Walk a Mile video series
A simple shoe can tell a complex story. This series builds on the old proverb that unless you walk a mile in someone else's shoes, you have no right to judge them. This video series will open the eyes of your students as Mike Donahue shares five stories of individuals he has met.
At first glance, each of these students may have been given a label. Mike helps students walk a mile in their shoes by telling their real story. They will then have the opportunity to change their perspective based on knowledge. Many students today are walking the halls of their schools with labels on their back.
Those labels can be devastating. A stereotype or mistake from their past can condemn them. This video series and discussion guide will change the way your students look at one another. It will open their minds to diversity and the concept that each person has a story that makes them who they are. It will teach them to respect differences.
4. Reinvent my Normal video series
Everyone will experience pain and disappointment on some level in their life. Many people never really learn how to deal with emotional pain. Whether it is their parent's divorce, abusive situations, a rape or molestation, what they once thought was normal can dramatically change when something traumatic happens.
This series will help students learn specific principles to navigate through painful situations. It will help them identify where they might be self-medicating. It will challenge them to take a hard look at some of their behavior and whether or not it is helping them to achieve their goals.
In addition, this series discusses preconceived mindsets that students may have accepted without being aware. It will encourage them to write their own story and not let their circumstances dictate where life will take them. This series will challenge them to reinvent their normal.
5. Roll playing scripts
We will give you several different scripts that you can use in a classroom setting to help the students feel what others might be feeling. Roll playing is a powerful tool to help people walk in each other’s shoes. We will have a discussion sheet for you to use after every script.
6. Fourth and Fifth presentation on the power of words
One of the best ways to learn something is to teach it. We are giving you a comprehensive presentation on the power of words that your high school students can present themselves to the younger students in your town. This a powerful tool because the fourth and fifth graders will be in awe as some of the students they look up to come into their world and present this strong message of respect. We walk your students through a 20-minute presentation that will impact those younger students in a very powerful way.
7. An Idea Sheet
Over the years schools have been very creative in carrying out our message of respect and diversity. We want to share those ideas with you. We will give you a sheet of the different creative techniques that have been shared with us. Sometimes hearing what others have done can spark something creative in us.