Students spread kindness in Ulukhaktok, N.W.T., for Pink Shirt Day

·2 min read
Students at  Helen Kalvak Elihakvik School in Ulukhaktok, N.W.T. crated pink signs with messages of kindness to celebrate Pink Shirt Day last week. Last Friday, with the help of their teachers and members of the RCMP, they posted the signs throughout the community. (Mackenzie Scott/CBC - image credit)
Students at Helen Kalvak Elihakvik School in Ulukhaktok, N.W.T. crated pink signs with messages of kindness to celebrate Pink Shirt Day last week. Last Friday, with the help of their teachers and members of the RCMP, they posted the signs throughout the community. (Mackenzie Scott/CBC - image credit)

Although Pink Shirt Day is this coming Friday, that didn't stop some students who are out of school this week in Ulukhaktok, N.W.T., to celebrate the day a little early.

Last Friday, students at Helen Kalvak Elihakvik School posted reminders to be kind throughout the community in honour of the day that is celebrated nationally with people wearing pink shirts to show they are against bullying.

"The kids have come up with some great ideas and some great positive words and blurbs and quotes to be put out there. Together we've all created some pink ice bricks, put some posts in them, so these positivity signs spread kindness throughout all of Ulukhaktok," said Sandra Summers, a teacher at Helen Kalvak Elihakvik School who, along with her fellow teachers, is on professional development this week.

Two students from Helen Kalvak Elihakvik School in Ulukhaktok, N.W.T. show the signs they made to celebrate Pink Shirt Day. Each sign the students made were in English and Inuinnaqtun and included phrases of kindness.
Two students from Helen Kalvak Elihakvik School in Ulukhaktok, N.W.T. show the signs they made to celebrate Pink Shirt Day. Each sign the students made were in English and Inuinnaqtun and included phrases of kindness.

Summers and Kathy Blouin both teach kids in composite classes of grades two to four.

Pink Shirt Day started in Nova Scotia in 2007 with one small act of kindness.

For the teachers, it was important that the kids be educated about the day and celebrated it even though they aren't in school.

"It fits in really well with our health unit right now with mental health and emotional well being ... our goal is to bring kindness to these kids and then for these kids to then go on and spread kindness throughout the community."

'Our words are powerful'

The pink signs were written in both English and Inuinnaqtun and included phrases like "throw kindness around like confetti" and "kindness is among us."

Students worked on it throughout the week, and posted them throughout the community on Friday with help of the RCMP.

"So ideally, when somebody when someone walks into the Co-op or the Northern [store], they are going to see one of the signs and it will make their day," said Summers.

Eight-year-old Sarah Joss said she had fun making the sign but was really looking forward to "bringing kindness around the town."

"Our words are powerful, they can make people sad or happy."

With bright smiles, the kids delivered the messages with their classmates and teachers.

"The biggest thing we want them to take from this is we want to inspire them to inspire others," said Summers.

"We want to let them know if they are in a tough situation that they can always choose kindness."