‘Start With Hello!’ A Success At Crestwood

Students hold signs to greet their fellow students as they arrive.

Crestwood Middle School in Royal Palm Beach recently participated in the “Start with Hello!” initiative to promote awareness about social isolation and create an inclusive environment for all students.

Students held up welcoming signs each morning in different languages to greet others as students were arriving to campus. It was an entire school event where students created art projects reflecting about themselves and sharing with new friends.

They wrote messages in different languages with chalk on the school’s walkway. During the week, themes included Forget Me Not, Embrace Diversity, Spread Kindness, Hey Day and Nothing Beats Team Support.

The students also participated during the school’s social and emotional learning (SEL) hour by playing a “human bingo” game inside their classroom where they had to find students in their class that fit certain categories. This activity was a favorite, and both students and teachers learned more about each other and found many things in common.

During the program, the school brought a 360-degree camera, and students danced and recorded themselves. Students also wrote positive messages on Post-it notes, which were shared with new students they met. There was also a day with icebreakers/conversation starters in the cafeteria, which helped students connect and share more about themselves.