So, the very first rule at our school is Show Respect. The first week of school, I am teaching this concept to all of the children. My discussion begins something like this:
"This is a pocket dictionary. What do you think it says as the definition of respect?" (All kinds of answers are given and all are validated). I then read the definition which is very simple. To hold in esteem. Then I look up esteem which says--to regard. I finally look up regard which basicly says to look apon with favor, or to love. "So, children, our principal wants us to treat the things and people around us with great respect, as if they are our favorite things and people. To respect, or at least act as if you respect everything and everyone around us."
FIRST GRADE GIRL: We have to respect a rock!
MR. BOWERS: Well, lets think about that...what if the rock was part of our living garden and was put around a tree for decoration?
ANOTHER FIRST GRADER: YEAH! Like it was some ART!
THE CLASS: Yeah, we cam respect rocks!
FIRST GRADE GIRL: Why do people decorate their trees with rocks??