A group of very admirable fifth graders, in Mankato, Minnesota, chose to stand against bullying and teach the rest of us a valuable lesson.
James Wallmart was the target of bullying at his 5th grade class in Franklin Elementary School. James has a learning disability that makes his educational process a little more challenging than it is for other kids. And that’s exactly why James was “chosen.” The bullies saw an opportunity to abuse and they didn’t allow it to slip by. Up to this point, it’s the usual painful, but very repetitive, story. Until 5 classmates decided to take a stand. Jack Pemble, Jake Burgess, Gus Gartzke, Tyler Jones and Landon Kopischke were witness to the continous bullying of James; they also knew it “isn’t right.”
The five boys included James in their group, invited him to their lunch table, and played with him in the playground to make sure no one picked on him. James’ mother comments on the positive effects the friendship with the boys has on her son saying:
“We just got a basketball for him last week because he now loves basketball. I mean… they’re changing him.”
James now can’t wait to finish his lunch to run back out to his friends. He is happier, feeling more accepted and loved. But the beauty doesn’t stop here. The five boys realized James didn’t have a video game medium, so they collected money from their own savings, and with the help of their parents, and they bought James Playstation 3.
James’ mom comments on how the boys seemed to be “smiling like crazy.” It has obviously made them as happy as it made James. James himself calls them “the best friends anybody could ask for.”
The gang later received a “Spirit of the Youth” award at their school, recommended by their teacher. Whether their kindness and good intentions were a direct result of the school’s anti-bullying policies or their own big hearts, you can’t help but feel happy and proud, boys as young as 10 or 11 years are capable of setting such a beautiful example of friendship, love, and kindness.
Read also: A Resentful Bully: How Do I Help My Child?
About the Author:
Sahar Medhat is an aspiring Egyptian writer with a degree in English and a passion for saving the world. She loves psychology, philosophy, intriguing cosmic mysteries, and putting long thoughts into pretty words. You can find her on her personal blog here; she’d love a message!