Building Bonds at Amityville Beach

Building Bonds at Amityville Beach photo

From A to Z, Amityville Memorial High School seniors lined up by first name during an activity at Amityville Beach on Oct. 10. The trick was, they had to do it without talking.

It was one of several bonding activities that seniors participated in during Awareness Day, an annual fall event for the senior class. Special education teacher Jason McGowan, who organized the day, said it was an opportunity for students to get to know each other better before they graduate and head off in different directions. 

A popular activity was the rock-paper-scissors competition. Students randomly paired up, and winners continued playing until a champion emerged. During Link It Up, each student found a peer who shared something in common like his or her birthday months or favorite food. Mr. McGowan posed questions to them to prompt discussions.

Later in the day, students formed groups of eight to 10, and that became their “family group” for the day. They were encouraged to join up with people who weren’t in their normal circle of friends. 

Noah Odige is in his second year at Amityville Memorial High School, so as a newcomer to a class that has largely been together since kindergarten, he enjoyed the experience. In addition to getting know his classmates better, Noah said Awareness Day helped strengthen existing friendships and created new ones.

“It’s a great bonding experience for the seniors,” he said. “It makes us stronger as a class.”

In November, the school will host Awareness Weekend, which is open to students in grades 10-12. The Friday afternoon to Saturday night event will include bonding activities, guest speakers and a sleepover in the school.