Violence Prevention Program a Success For HMSS Students
"Silence The Violence" brings school together
Even as they presented their plan to their fellow students, a group from Middle School South knew asking their friends to stop playing violent video games for a week would be something of a stretch.
Still, they pressed forward with their "Silence the Violence" campaign and according to their teacher Jamie Strauss it went better than they could have hoped. "Overall we had a great week," she said.
With 75 percent of the student body signing a pledge to put some of their favorite games on the shelf, Strauss said the gamers got the message. Rather than defending the earth against aliens, fighting virtual wars or going hunting Strauss said they spent their time bonding with friends, playing other kinds of games and even forming kickball games throughout Ramtown.
As the week went on Strauss said even students who had doubted the program began to believe in it more. Students like Alex Morton who said violent video games were a regular part of their day enjoyed the break to try something new. "I notice that I am definitely calmer," Morgan said. "I am not in a rush to get back to playing those types of games."
Ryan Hooper also said he was against the idea at first. "I stopped playing violent video games completely. Once I gave them up, I realized that it was better and that they were not that fun." Putting down the controller Hooper said he spent more time playing basketball and enjoying some fresh air.
Students who had favored the program were glad it worked as well as it did. "I am so happy that we are making a difference," Jessica Klein said. "Many children play these games killing people, sometimes for hours at a time, and they don't realize how it affects real life, real people."
Some like Morton said they will likely return to the games at some point but Strauss said it was good from them to see what even a week away from the violence could do in their daily lives.