Article by Carolina, Keiana B.
Challenge Day is a program that helps students have positive thoughts, anti-bullying, and build empathy. It also helps build trust with your family and friends. The person who brought this program to Montera is Ms.Yari, the restorative justice coordinator.
“My goal is for all the participants to open to considering the message of Challenge Day: to be the challenge we need for our community--and our world--to be a better place,” Mr. Yari told the Toro Times. “At Montera my role is to support community building and bring people together to peacefully address conflicts and restore relationships. I learned about what causes pain even when we don’t--or won’t--say we are hurting.”
Ms. Yari also knows how deeply our community cares about each other when they have the opportunity to open up in a safe and honest space. “Because there is pain and hurt in our community and also love and care, I seek opportunities for our school to strengthen relationships whenever we can so that our whole school can become a safe and honest space where we can all be real with each other and truly show how much we care.”
Ms. Yari found out about this activity last year through her peers. This year, she learned that the school district had a special opportunity to bring Challenge Day to several middle schools, and Montera was selected as one of those schools.
Challenge Day takes the whole day. One hundred students participate per day in various activities with 25 adults helping out. It will take three full Challenge Days for every 7th grade student to have the opportunity to participate because we have a very large school community!
Ms. Yari is not working alone on this activity. The PE department is helping by generously sharing the gym, cafeteria members are making bagged lunches, and the PTO is helping recruit family and community volunteers to join the janitors in taking special efforts to set up and clean up.
Two of the Challenge Days have already occurred on February 18 and 20, and two more are coming up on March 4 and 6. March 6 will be the only Challenge Day for 8th graders.