In October, Coopertown Elementary students joined more than one million other students across the country and around the world to help break down social and racial barriers by participating in Mix It Up at Lunch Day on October 23rd. The event, launched by the Teaching Tolerance project in 2002, encourages students to sit with someone new in the cafeteria for one day and to use the day as a springboard to practice kindness and respect yearlong. Cafeterias are the focus of Mix It Up because that is where a school’s social boundaries are most obvious. The barrier-busting activity took place during lunch.
How it worked:
1. Students randomly drew a ticket as they entered the cafeteria.
2. Students were directed to sit according to their ticket.
3. Students either bought lunch at school or had a packed lunch from home.
4. There were conversation starters on each table to encourage conversation.
5. Students were encouraged to shake hands with their table mates.