Guts Factor: 7th graders learn to take risks to make a difference (Jenn Marlar)

JACKSON HOLE, WYO – Taking a stand for something you believe in takes guts, and these students have what it takes! Jennifer Marlar’s 7th graders at Jackson Hole Middle School were asked to tackle a problem in the world today and speak out for their Quarter 4 “Combat the Silence” project.

One component of the project asked students to put themselves out there and to take a risk in order to go out into the community and raise awareness for their problem of choice. This was called their “Guts Factor” and these are some of the highlights:

Combating the Silence through Fundraising

Madeline Meyer, Kyra Waldron, and Libby Hampton.

Maddy Meyer, Kyra Waldron and Elizabeth Hampton made a difference and fought to end kill shelters in the United States by putting on a dog wash outside of Pet Place Plus that turned out 13 squeaky clean four-legged fur babies! The group raised a grand total of $217 and donated 100% of the profits to Dog is my Copilot, Inc. (DIMC),which has saved thousands of animals’ lives.

DIMC was created in 2012 by a doctor in Wyoming and a lawyer in Arizona. Peter Rork, MD and Judy Zimet, Esq. work with a supportive Board to fly animals from areas of the United States where they are not wanted, to areas of the United States where they are in demand.

Max Nava, Saul Ismaya-Hernandez

Max Nava, Saul Ismaya-Hernandez and Julian Sosa (not pictured). These three braved the weather and offered car wash services to all teachers at JHMS through a Google form sign up. They charged a very affordable $10 for outside, and $15 for both internal and external cleaning, to raise awareness and funds for mental health. The money earned was donated to sponsor a child’s mental health summer services through Teton Behavior Therapy.

Aaron Huggins (shooting) Jose Escobedo, Kris Phillips, and Castle Gayton.

Aaron Huggins and Castle Gayton. These incredible student-athletes held a “Hoop-A-Thon” and took pledges to help students commit to not drinking alcohol underage. They went around the community asking for pledges as to how many 3-pointers they could score in a minute. All proceeds collected went to the Prevention Management Organization of Wyoming.

Abigail Gava

Abby Gava was heartbroken after finding out that her grandfather had been battling Type 1 Diabetes for the last 30 years, and she wanted to do something to help him and other like him find an easier way to manage their lives with the life threatening disease. She decided to put her talents to work and created handmade bracelets and hair ties to sell and she raised a whopping $217 to donate to American Diabetes Association to help find a cure for Type 1 Diabetes.

Kayson Jones and Kaleb Kunde. Fed up with the stereotyping of skateboarders, these two die-hard skateboarders put on a “Kickflip-a-Thon” to raise awareness and funds for skateboarders in the community. They helped raise the status of skateboarders in Jackson Hole and raised money, which went to help support the Jackson Hole Ski and Snowboard Club.

Kayson Jones and Kaleb Kunde.

Raising Awareness through Teaching Others

Trent Healy

Trent Healy braved the crowds of tourists on Town Square to teach them about the injustices of animal abuse at SeaWorld. He created a poster with graphic images and information about the inhumane and horrific ways animals are being treated at SeaWorld.

McKaylee Harmon and Bella Gutierrez.

McKaylee Harmon and Bella Gutierrez mustered up their courage and planned a lesson on the lack of girl’s education in Guder, Ethiopia to be taught in front of two different 6th grade classes.

But they didn’t stop there. They also wanted to fundraise to support the Tomorrow Come Foundation, which was “created to provide a safe home, to support a healthy life, and to foster growth through education for the children in and around New Hope Center for Children and Handicapped in Guder, Ethiopia.” They did this by setting up a Lemonade Stand and raised $208.

Bennett Balogh and Owen Janssen went around to different classrooms and gave a speech about horrific atrocities caused by gun violence in school shootings. They explained ideas how students can help improve the lives of peers. This is Ms. Jaselskis classroom in Jackson Middle School.

Bennett Balogh and Owen Janssen.

Spreading Awareness through Art and Performance

Jade Goodrich, Clara McGhee.

Jade Goodrich and Clara McGee. Inspired by Malala’s tragic story, these amazing girls wanted to spread awareness for the lack of girls’ education in Pakistan, so Jade and Clara created custom ordered stamp-printed t-shirts for anyone in the community to order.

Then, they sent out an invitation for everyone to wear them on the same day to spread awareness. But they didn’t stop there! They wanted to teach 5th graders in English and in Spanish about the importance of equality for all and taught two dual classes at Colter.

Marco Sosa

Marco Sosa. Thinking outside of the box and his own comfort zone, Marco felt one way to get the attention of his peers would be by wearing a skirt to school to start a conversation about bullying in middle school. He expected many students to tease him or ask him about the skirt which would then open the door to start the conversation about why bullying and judging people is wrong and hurtful and has horrific consequences.

Hatten Pike wrote a powerful and moving poem about the negative effects of extremism in this country and memorized it to present in front of his own Language Arts class.

Kai Hunter, Hanna Hatten, and Rye Webb

Kai Hunter, Hanna Hatten, and Rye Webb. Following in the footsteps of Kia’s father, this trio pushed their physical limits by riding their bikes 24 miles starting at Rafter J all the way to Wilson and all the way back. They were raising money for “The Child’s Place Orphanage” in Mongolia.

Taylor and Avery

Taylor and Avery set up a petition to ask people to sign that urges them to exercise 60 minutes and eat healthy for one today, also they educated them about obesity; including the negative effects of obesity, the causes of obesity, and the amount of people in the United States are obese. They also created handmade stickers that argue against obesity, the stickers say “Prevent Obesity, Eat Healthy.”

You May Also Like
Guts Factor shoutouts from Robin Soule’s spectacular 7th Graders
Guts Factor shoutouts from Alivia Bingham’s phenomenal 7th Graders
Guts Factor shoutouts from Kelly Kaiser’s phenomenal 7th Graders
Dynamic duo sets up ’cause for PAWS’ popup at Broulims
Guts Factor: 7th graders learn to take risks to make a difference (Kelly Kaiser)
Gut check: Middle School 7th graders learn to take risks to make a difference