November 22 Home Communicator – A few months ago, after witnessing a chapel where students spent the morning reading Scripture, I wrote about how I should “act a little more like a middle schooler”. People thought I was crazy, yet appreciated a perspective that challenged typical assumptions of middle schoolers. Here’s another crazy idea. Last Wednesday I voluntarily attended a 7th grade skating party and…actually had a great time! And it wasn’t why you might expect.
I expected to put on roller blades that had been (hopefully) disinfected, skate in circles for an hour and a half, attempt the limbo, and above all else, not get injured. I also expected the awkward moment when the “couples skate” began and the nervous laughter and hormonal tension became palpable.
And it lived up to all those expectations–and more. But what I didn’t expect was a conversation with the staff at RollXscape and an email later that evening. The staff mentioned how respectful our kids were the whole night. They were shocked when kids said “please” or “thank you” when they ordered a pretzel or ‘pickle-sicle’. We later received an email from the owner that read:
I just wanted to pass along some comments from my staff about your skating event with us. Please pass this along.
-“Those were the most polite kids we have ever had at a school party.”
-“This was the cleanest a school party has ever left our facility.”
-“I was impressed with how well they followed instructions and rules.”
I can say that I can agree with them 100%. Thank you for setting up this event. We hope to work with Hudsonville Christian more in the future.
I could not help but smile as I read this email and the impression it made on the staff at RollXscape. What a blessing to work with students that are gracious and partner with parents that raise their sons/daughters to be respectful and polite.
Perhaps it’s sad that our world expects 7th graders to be disrespectful and immature. Don’t get me wrong, there are moments. However, last week I was thankful to witness 85 seventh graders not live up to those expectations.
Chris Achterhof, Middle School Principal