Bringing Kindness back to MSHS

During the week of November 13 to November 19, Manitou Springs High School’s Student Council put on a “Kindness Week” with the help of other clubs such as Key Club, Environmental Club, Sources of Strength, National Honors Society and Manitou Performing Arts Club.

Throughout this whole week, a “Flip and Drip” thrift shop style clothing shop was held in the Media Center. “With the Thrift Shop, we really wanted to teach people about fast fashion and that they can have fun with buying secondhand clothes and doing clothing swaps,” said Gabrielle Waters, Environmental Club Advisor. Many students came and visited the shop to find a variety of new clothes for their closets. “The best moment would be Lance Warner picking out a long cardigan that he termed as the ‘Trench Cardigan,’” Waters said. 

Kindness isn’t this one to-do list item that you cross off once a week; it’s something we have to reflect on and practice all the time.

— Anna Conrad

To kick off this Kindness Week, NHS hosted a Staff vs Student basketball game. “The Staff vs Student game was a good way to show love and support to both sides. It was entertaining to watch and to be involved in,” Hailey Huyser (11) said. This basketball game was a fun way to help build connections between the staff and student body. “The best part from the game was watching Mrs. Kerrigan fall over while I was guarding her,” Kai Thomas (11) said. 

Going into the weekend, there was a black light themed dance on Saturday night. The old gym and the hallway leading up to it was lined with black lights. Students and staff dressed up with bright colors that reflected in the black lights to create a full, brightly colored environment. “It was so great to see so many students from all grades just enjoying themselves and knowing that they belong,” Student Body President Abigail Parker (12) said.

Liam Bowie (10), Norah Jorstad (11), Weatherly Hall (12) and Elizabeth Johnson (10) dance on a platform at the black light dance. (Alyssa Rash)

Each day of the week a club led a kindness activity during Advisory. Sources of Strength started off the week on Monday during Advisory with a gratitude activity. “The purpose of this activity was to have everyone write down what they are thankful for on a sticky note and hang it up on the trophy case in the Commons. This brings some self-awareness to the student body since saying what you’re thankful for can help with your mental health,” said Camden Seal (12), Sources of Strength Co-President. This activity brought some gratitude to students’ lives. “After all the gratitude sticky notes had been hung up on the trophy case in the Commons, it was super beautiful to know that regardless of how big or small, there is always something that we can be thankful for,” Parker said.

Key Club held an appreciation activity for animals during Advisory on Tuesday. “We wanted to show appreciation and kindness to animals and nature, so we recycled old t-shirts and made dog toys out of them that we then donated to the humane society,” said Weatherly Hall (12), Key Club Vice President. “My favorite part was walking around and seeing all kinds of different students participating. I loved that it was a very inclusive activity and it seemed like people had a lot of fun doing it.”

To finish off the week, StuCo held a dodgeball tournament during advisory on Thursday and Friday. This event was open to all students and staff to make teams of eight to play against each other in front of the student body. “It was a fun way to spend time with my peers. No matter who you are, you probably enjoyed it at least a little bit and laughed some,” said Sami Benge-Kulzer (11). 

Cassidy Blechman (10), Mckesson Rhodes (10), Evan Yount (10), Samuel Fournier (10), Nathan Gentzel (10), Hallen Haile (10), William Cittadino (10) and Khristian Sanders (10) celebrate winning the dodgeball tournament at the end of Kindness Week. (Alice Stoneback)

This Kindness week was an overall success for all clubs. “Kindness Week was so contagious. Wherever you looked, you could hear and see it,” said Anna Conrad, Assistant Principal.  It brought the students and staff together and introduced new ways to show kindness around MSHS. “I hope that [everyone was] able to take away a moment that mattered and discover how great the impact of kindness at MSHS can be,” Parker said.