Reagan JROTC Cadets Teach Loyalty
Submitted By Kathleen Bailey
In early October, Colonel Livingston and three Reagan High School JROTC cadets visited Hardy Oak Elementary to teach a class of fifth grades the first of the Seven Army Values: Loyalty. This was the beginning of a seven-week mentorship program that will continue throughout the year. The cadets are hoping to inspire growth, not only in themselves, but for everyone involved. Their goal is to educate, demonstrate morals, and build relationships.
The two presenting cadets greeted the audience during their first visit to Hardy Oak, excited for the program to begin, and began their introduction. They defined loyalty as giving or showing support to a person or group. As a way of getting to know one another the classroom passed a volleyball around and posed the question, “Who is one person in your life that you see as loyal? What makes them loyal?” Afterwards, it was explained that in friendship loyalty is not keeping a bad secret that could hurt them or hurt others, but loyalty is pushing your friends to do the right thing.
This lesson was then applied to a metaphor. The children were asked to imagine that there were 100 people who wanted to build a brick wall and that the wall would need 10,000 bricks. In order to cut the workload down, everyone contributed by taking care of 1,000 bricks. This demonstrated the point that when people are loyal, everything is more pleasant and more fair. This lesson flowed then into the next activity.
The second game was inspired by Charades. Every one had to demonstrate loyalty by following directions. In order to make the game a challenge, the class was divided in half into two teams that would race one another. As the children lined up, they had to mimic the actions of the person in front of them and pass on the movement to next person in the order. Whichever group could get their action first to the end won. Finally, when the lesson was over, there was a reward for excellent behavior – cookies!
Though it required a great deal of effort and planning, the mentorship program was successful. It allowed the belief in loyalty to grow.