news and events
The Middle School Peer Leaders visited Bedwell on April 10th! Their lessons focused on considering more than one way of understanding a behavior, event, or situation. Perspective taking is an essential skill for problem solving; students who are able to understand and accept classmates who behave or think differently than they do are better able to respect and avoid conflicts.
March classroom lessons focused on teaching students strategies for bringing a gentle, accepting attitude to the present moment. The award-winning book, What Does It Mean To Be Present? written by Rana DiOrio and illustrated by Eliza Wheeler, reinforced what it means to be mindful or to be in the present moment, and gave students a foundation from which to make connections to their own lives. Students learned that being present in the moment is about listening to yourself and others, focusing on the now, being grateful, and learning from mistakes. It is also about slowing down to focus on the beauty that surrounds us each and every day.
Bedwell welcomes Officer Potts! We are very excited to have Special Officer Richard Potts visiting our school on a regular basis. School and community leaders agree that by reaching out to elementary school children, law enforcement officers can plant the seeds for a positive relationship with students in the future.
Thanks to a generous grant from the Somerset Hills Education Foundation, each classroom at Bedwell School is the proud owner of a Hoberman sphere with which students are learning how to take "brain breaks" to increase focus and attention and reduce stress. . According to Amy Saltzman, a researcher of mindfulness education, "One of the primary ironies of modern education is that we ask students to “pay attention” dozens of times a day, yet we never teach them how.” Engaging in deep belly breathing can increase focus and attention, improve pro-social behavior, enhance daily happiness, and increase levels of calm while decreasing stress and anxiety. From a neurological or physiological perspective, deep belly breathing slows the heart rate, lowers blood pressure, and sharpens the mind’s ability to focus and learn by slowing down the amygdala and supporting the higher brain function taking place in the frontal lobes. One of the other benefits of deep belly breathing is the control it gives participants over their emotions, their learning, and their own lives. When students slow and organize their breathing, they are able to pay attention and complete learning tasks more readily.
Melinda Jennis of Pathways for Exceptional Children (https://pathwayskids.org/) returned for the fourth year in a row to deliver sensitivity training to all third grade students. Her message, that it is essential for students of all abilities to develop a sense of belonging and a strong foundation of value and self worth, is delivered through a “children-teaching-children” mentoring model. When kids teach and mentor other children, the value given to both is priceless.
I AM Project
The "I AM" project at Bedwell gave students an opportunity to consider who they are and what qualities make them unique. It allowed them to let their peers know who they really are, while promoting acceptance and appreciation for the distinctive qualities that they each possess. “I AM” helped them to see past what they thought they knew about each other, find common ground, and celebrate each other’s differences.
Bedwell's Chain Gang!
Every Friday, fourth grade Chain Gang members come to the counseling office to staple the week's links into our ever growing "chain of good deeds" making its way through the halls of Bedwell!
Bullying, Part 2
November classroom lessons focused on how to respond when you think you're being bullied, what to do if you see someone else being bullied, and why bullying is so damaging. Bedwell students learned that every time a hurtful comment, gesture, or act is directed at someone, it's as if that person's heart gets wrinkled. Even if the person doesn't show that they've been hurt on the outside, on the inside it's a different story. No amount of after-the-fact apologies can ever smooth out the wrinkles caused by acts of unkindness. Nobody has the right to wrinkle another person's heart!
Red Ribbon Week 10/16-10/20
Red Ribbon Week was begun in response to the murder of DEA Agent Enrique Camarena in 1985. Parents and children in communities across the country began wearing Red Ribbons as a symbol of their commitment to raise awareness of the destruction caused by drugs in America. At Bedwell, we recognize Red Ribbon Week as an opportunity to educate and support students in the decision making process necessary to make good choices in all aspects of their lives.
Week of Respect 10/2-10/6
New Jersey has designated the first week of October as a “Week of Respect”. During this week at Bedwell, all students received age-appropriate instruction focusing on the prevention of harassment, intimidation, and bullying. In addition, students were invited to create a "Rachel's Challenge" poster, showing how we create a chain of good deeds at Bedwell.
2017-2018 Bedwell Spirit Days
Wear Red & White
Crazy Hair Day
Crazy Socks Day
Animal Print Day
Red, White, and Blue Day
Hawaiian Shirt Day