‘Towers of kindness’

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, October 22, 2002

When Ginny Seibert, an English teacher at Southwest Middle School, assigned students in her four eighth-grade English classes to do a reflective writing assignment for her for the one-year anniversary of Sept. 11 she decided to have them focus on the kind things that they’ve done in their lives.

“I wanted to focus on the positive,” she said. “Instead of all the negative things that are going on.”

What Seibert came up with was ‘towers of kindness.’ Eighty-eight eighth graders wrote poems, reflections or stories on single sheets of paper.

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Seibert arranged the 88 pieces of multi-colored papers on a wall in the Southwest library in two block shapes next to each other that look similar to the twin towers.

“It turned out very well,” said Seibert. “The kids responded positively to it and it was a really great for me to hear the stories of their kindness. It’s something you don’t get to hear from these kids everyday.”

“I think overall I was trying to reflect on the things that bring us together,” said Seibert. “When America was first founded the people we a lot alike, they had the same visions, there was an American persona. I think today some people tend to forget that still exists. But even through all our differences we can see that kindness is kind of our common theme.”

Seibert said the most fulfilling part of the project was putting it up. “When we put it all together the kids got to see it as a finished product. I think they were pretty happy with it and were interested to read what their classmates had done.”

“Hopefully they learned a little bit more about the importance of being kind and respectful,” said Seibert.