Belmont High School
2017 Diversity Week Program
|SpeakOUT:||“SpeakOUT is a community of speakers working to create a world free of homo-bi-trans-phobia and other forms of prejudice by telling the truths of our lives.
They engage audiences in honest dialogue, and in keeping with our motto ‘Ask Us Anything,’ invite any questions that may challenge harmful stereotypes and misconceptions.”
With a diverse panel of speakers, SpeakOUT hopes to give the audience a better understanding of intersectionality.
Monday, April 3
|Laughter Yoga||Certified Laughter Yoga Teacher, Linda Hamaker of “Let’s Laugh Today” (www.letslaughtoday.com) will show you how to bring more laughter into your life without using comedy, jokes or humor! Enjoy this unique exercise of laughter and clapping combined with gentle breathing that brings more oxygen to the body’s cells. This oxygen boost gives enhanced vitality, energy and a feeling of real well-being. Any age and any level of physical ability can participate in this uplifting experience! You can sit or stand. There are no fancy poses. Linda will show you how you can add more laughter to your life and how you can use laughter to ease your stress. You will see that laughter is the best medicine!
Linda Hamaker is a graduate of both The American School of Laughter Yoga and The Dr. Kataria School of Laughter Yoga. She and her husband founded “Let’s Laugh Today” over eight years ago and have been spreading the joys and health benefits of laughter yoga through laughter clubs, corporations, schools, medical centers, senior centers, assisted living homes, and private events. They have presented at Laughter Yoga Conferences and have been through Laughter Wellness training. They also teach and certify others to lead laughter sessions and have been named Ambassadors to Laughter Yoga by Dr. Madan Kataria, the Indian physician who created laughter yoga. They have appeared on community television, been on the radio, and have been featured on the front page of many community newspapers. They were featured last summer in the BOSTON Magazine’s alternative medicine section.
|Tue, April 4||Urban Improv||Urban Improv is an interactive workshop assembly, focused on helping students build skills to navigate challenging conversations around issues of diversity, and speak/listen respectfully and meaningfully when difficult or contentious subjects arise.
The Urban Improv Actors/Facilitators perform scenes that tackle these challenging topics and then invite student input and interaction to think through the nuances of the situation and explore different approaches for creating respectful dialogue or de-escalating conflict.
|Thursday, 4/6||Belmont Religion Council||The Belmont Religious Council is the interfaith council in town, which is open to any faith community. Representatives of a variety of faiths will be serving on a panel to facilitate discussion and reflection regarding the similarities and differences between faiths and the role that kindness plays in all of them.|
|Thursday, 4/6||LGBTQ Homelessness Panel||LGBTQ youth and young adults are over-represented among youth and young adults experiencing homelessness. Whether kicked out or abused, many of these youth are left to choose between the streets or predatory adult shelters. Even in a city like Boston, there are few services and spaces that understand this population’s unique needs. Liniște, a young gay woman experiencing homelessness, joins Mike DeSocio, a student journalist from Boston University, and Joe Finn, the executive director of the Massachusetts Housing and Shelter Alliance, to share Liniște’s story and discuss the issue of LGBTQ youth homelessness.|
|Friday, 4/7||Minding Your Mind||At a young age, Carl began using alcohol as a way to mask the shame and pain he felt as a result of his ongoing battle with anxiety and depression. His use of addictive substances as a negative coping skill quickly progressed and eventually spun out of control. In his recovery process, he has learned healthy, effective ways to handle his emotions, as well as life’s ups and downs. Carl believes that the feelings he struggles with are faced by young people everywhere and that the lessons he continues to learn in recovery are valuable not only for those suffering from substance abuse, but to anyone facing life’s challenges.|
|Friday, 4/7||The Chocolate Project||Black in Belmont is a student organized club that branched off of one staff meeting. Its goal is to empower the black youth attending schools in the suburbs, specifically Belmont. We focus on embracing the self love through group bonding, empowering one another, and to educate others outside of our group. We strive to demonstrate that we are not the stereotypes forced upon us.|
|Friday, 4/7||Student Voices||Students will read anonymous submissions from other BHS students based on the following prompt: Diversity is about embracing and celebrating what makes us different. What are the things that make you different, and how have they affected your experience in life and at BHS?
Students who auditioned for Belmont Idol will also show off their diverse musical talents.