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A reminder to be kind

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FRIENDLY AND FUNNY:Keith Deltano, a educational comedian, educates Maconaquah elementary students on how to identify and avoid bullying. Deltano provided two convocations at Maconaquah on Tuesday — one for middle and high school students in the morning, and elementary students in the afternoon. His website is dontbullyonline.com.
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FRIENDLY AND FUNNY:Keith Deltano, a educational comedian, educates Maconaquah elementary students on how to identify and avoid bullying. Deltano provided two convocations at Maconaquah on Tuesday — one for middle and high school students in the morning, and elementary students in the afternoon. His website is dontbullyonline.com.

BY ERIC STOFF

Maconaquah School Corporation received a positive message about anti-bullying on Tuesday to start the school year on the right foot.

Keith Deltano, an educational comedian and anti-bullying speaker, presented two convocations for Maconaquah students on Tuesday. Middle and high school students heard from him in the morning, and elementary students heard from him in the afternoon.

His presentation detailed his own story of how he overcame bullying as a child, and it taught the students how to identify the four kinds of bullying: touching, name calling, keeping out, and online.

Maconaquah Middle School sixth grader Thomas Bruce and eighth grader Maggie Hughes found the convocation helpful.

Hughes said it was a good message to hear at the beginning of the school year.

“It helps encourage you to be nice to others and treat them the way you want to be treated,” she said.

Hughes said personal differences aren’t something to make fun of. Rather, life would be “pretty boring” if everyone was the same.

Bruce said many of the students could relate to Deltano because he shared about his own childhood.

Bruce said he was once the victim of bullying, but he was able to work it out with the help of a teacher, and he’s friends with the peers that used to bully him.

“I hope that (the students) learned that they should be nice to each other,” he said.

Maconaquah Elementary School Principal Kelly McPike said Deltano’s message was clear and a good reminder: “bullying is not acceptable in any form.”

“He spoke about the different types of bullying and the need for everyone to stand up to any bully at any time,” McPike said. “I felt his talk with simple for students to understand and gives all of us common language to use in bullying situations.”

Maconaquah Superintendent Dr. Jamey Callane said his hope for Maconaquah is to be bully-free.

“There is no room for such behavior in our school corporation,” he said. “The convocation today hopefully inspired our students to make a commitment to not bully their peers.”

Deltano tours the country as an educational comedian, presenting on such topics as bullying. More information about Deltano and his program can be found at dontbullyonline.com.