2017-09-07 / Business

District staff embraces day of Positivity

By Paula K. Schmidt
810-452-2647 • pschmidt@mihomepaper.com


Firefighter Stephanie Throop discusses the challenges and daily activities which firefighters handle on a daily basis. 
Photos by Paula K. Schmidt Firefighter Stephanie Throop discusses the challenges and daily activities which firefighters handle on a daily basis. Photos by Paula K. Schmidt GRAND BLANC TWP. — First the school, then the district, and maybe…the world!??

Indian Hill Principal Jeremy Mitchell has loaded his staff on board the Positivity Project train and hopes to infect local businesses and residents with the message being taught to all students this year—that positive character traits and behaviors can make the world a better place.

The entire district staff of nearly 1,000 traveled in groups of five across the city and township to learn about and live the 24 character strengths of P2, as it is called—performing acts of service and good deeds related to, and learning about, the positive character traits.

Staff members began their day at their home buildings to prepare for their event and then took their groups on the road for the scavenger hunt-style event at local sites where they listened to speakers and engaged in activities to help demonstrate the characteristics they will teach their pupils. Characteristics include curiosity, bravery, enthusiasm, prudence and many more.


MSP Trooper Ty Purdy and his K9 Rocko take on questions about bravery at the Grand Blanc Fire Station number1 during the P2 event. MSP Trooper Ty Purdy and his K9 Rocko take on questions about bravery at the Grand Blanc Fire Station number1 during the P2 event. Staff members at Sam’s Club helped people load their groceries and take them out to their car to learn about humility. Groups met in Rust Park to learn appreciation for Beauty and Excellence.

They all met again for lunch at West Middle School and debriefed at the end of the day.

Firefighters, township police Officer Jon Schwartz and Michigan State Police Trooper Ty Purdy and his K9 Rocko talked to school employees about examples of when they had to be brave or witnessed bravery.


President Brenda von Linsowe of the Touch the Earth Garden club, an organization dedicated to multiple garden sites in Grand Blanc, discusses the character traits of Appreciation for Beauty and Excellence as exemplified by the ceramic tile wall which was originally created by Indian Hill students with the help of Guy Adamec of the Flint Institute of Arts and installed in 2008. President Brenda von Linsowe of the Touch the Earth Garden club, an organization dedicated to multiple garden sites in Grand Blanc, discusses the character traits of Appreciation for Beauty and Excellence as exemplified by the ceramic tile wall which was originally created by Indian Hill students with the help of Guy Adamec of the Flint Institute of Arts and installed in 2008. According to their website, P2 focuses on using positive language instead of negative language, especially when it comes to instructing children. Instead of telling a child to “stop doing” something, it encourages rewording guidance to promote what children should be doing and having a conversation with children about positive behavior. While this is something which can be done at home, P2 hopes to bring this same attitude into the classroom.

Mitchell stated he was very proud and appreciative of every single Indian Hill Jaguars team member.

“They have all put in countless hours and effort to try and do something amazing…because they want their colleagues, no, their friends, to feel what the #OtherPeopleMatter movement is all about!”

The motto “Other people matter”, was created by Dr. Christopher Peterson of the University of Michigan who, with President and co-founder Mike Erwin, created the movement. P2 is a 501c3 non-profit organization aimed at “empowering America’s youth to build better relationships by seeing the character strengths in themselves and others.”

Details of the day can be viewed online by using the search term #p2dayingb which will link to pictures and posts about the staff’s experience throughout the day. Although typically deployed in elementary level schools, the high school will be one of a few debuting the program this year in that level.

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