Peer Resource talks to Hall Middle Students

Henry Tantum

On February 6, the Peer Resource class traveled down the street to Hall Middle School to work with students and help “plant the seed” towards building a stronger community.

According to senior Leo Cooperband, a member of Peer Resource, the class led various activities aimed at creating trust and sharing insecurities.

“We had three sessions where each Peer Resource member got a group of students from all grades, and worked with them to build trust and talk about how to respect each other,” Cooperband said.

Cooperband said that, although it was hard to tell, the sessions seemed to be effective.

Hall Middle School students sit during an assembly with the Peer Resource class
Hall Middle School students sit during an assembly with the Peer Resource class

“You could tell that a lot of the kids left with their minds had been opened up a bit,” he said. “People recognized more of the problems with the people around them. They became more cognizant and respectful.”

Several Hall students, including Adi Jenkins, said that the Peer Resource program was beneficial to her and the entire class.

“It helped me bond with the people that I didn’t know had insecurities,” Jenkins said. “You get to know the people around you more, and you get to know their weaknesses, but you also get to know their truths.”

According to Cooperband, the visit was planned after a series of problems in at Hall related to a lack of empathy and community.

Ambrose Neufeld, another Hall student, also attested to the effectiveness of the program, especially related to labeling and stereotypes.

“I learned to open my mind to different things, and that I am a victim to labeling people,” Neufeld said.