A Positive Attitude

By: Sandy Huber, Principal
February 2021

As many know, University Park World Peace Garden and hundreds of students from Stockton schools, in partnership with the International World Peace Rose Gardens and students all over the globe, participate in the Inspirational Messages of Peace Contest. The Inspirational Messages of Peace are judged locally and winning messages are placed on plaques throughout the garden and unveiled by students at our annual spring Celebration. Students have the opportunity to participate in the contest year after year, allowing them to develop their peace platform and build a peaceful community within their classroom. The Inspirational Messages of Peace are poignant and unscripted feelings in 30 words or less revealing the thoughts and dreams of this next generation.

Every year we select one of the 60 Qualities of Peace to be the focus of the contest and reflective of that year’s celebration. The theme chosen will be featured throughout the competition and is what the students can use as the base of what their messages are written on.

This year’s theme will be positive attitude.  This theme was selected because now more than ever, students can benefit from identifying what a positive attitude requires and be empowered to choose a more positive attitude every day.

Along with this announcement, we are very excited to share that Grupe Huber received a grant from the University of the Pacific’s Beyond Our Gates initiative for the second year in a row as part of the University Park World Peace Rose Garden Inspirational Messages of Peace Contest.

The University of the Pacific’s Beyond Our Gates initiative is a community outreach effort focused on improving education and quality of life in Stockton and San Joaquin County. The grant allowed for an Inspirational Messages of Peace virtual pre-writing kick-off event held on February 11. This collaborative event invited students from Hamilton Middle School to engage in active discussion and co-creation of Inspirational Messages of Peace.

This year, the event was held completely over Zoom. Click here to watch the introduction video created to welcome the students, as well as provide them with more information about the Inspirational Messages of Peace Contest and the event.

During the Zoom event, groups of students from Hamilton Middle School were paired up with a CIP student from UOP to complete activities. CIP stands for Community Involvement Program, and students with this title have been awarded the honor of a comprehensive need-based scholarship at UOP as part of a program for first-generation college students from the Stockton community. CIP students have demonstrated the potential for sustainable leadership, community awareness, and involvement.

As CIP students engage with Hamilton students, not only are they supporting them in generating ideas for their pre-writing experience they are also developing relationships where Hamilton students can envision themselves attending college and becoming a future tiger!

Students in attendance took part in three different activities; an ice-breaker, a free-writing activity, and a mind mapping brainstorm session.

  • Ice-breakers are methods of introducing participants to an activity and making them comfortable to share ideas with a larger group. 
  • Free-writing is an activity that helps writers get their ideas flowing with a writing prompt. The purpose of free-writing is to prompt the writer to put their thoughts on the page without stopping by following impulses of their mind and allowing thoughts and inspiration to appear to them without premeditation.
  • Mind mapping is a pre-writing technique to help generate creative ideas. A mind map is a visual representation of ideas, consisting of connected words, phrases, and even images.  
    • Click here to see a video of the 2020 event (pre-COVID 19) to get a better idea of how these activities work!

We were so grateful to have the Hamilton students participate in this event again this year since it allowed them all to develop their messages of peace! We cannot wait to read the wonderful positive attitude messages that come to life this year.