ILION — When 1:30 p.m. arrives each Friday, students and staff at the Herkimer-Fulton-Hamilton-Otsego BOCES Pathways Academy at Remington pause to reflect on something positive that has taken place in their lives.
At that time, everybody writes down “positive affirmation moments” — named P.A.M. for short — and many of the moments are displayed on a bulletin board each week.
P.A.M. has become something students and staff look forward to, Herkimer BOCES guidance counselor Heather Paul said.
“Everybody is always focusing on the negative,” she said. “It’s nice to have the light of something positive.”
P.A.M. was designed as a team-building activity for the Pathways Academy. Positive affirmations can be powerful tools to help modify how individuals think and feel about themselves and others. By constantly using positive affirmations, negatives can be changed into positives.
Pathways Academy seventh-grader Dakota Jowett, 13, said he has enjoyed participating in P.A.M.
“If something happens in the school — if someone helps you out — then you write it down,” he said.
In addition to writing down moments when P.A.M. time is announced over the loud speaker each Friday afternoon, students can pull out a folder in each classroom and write down a moment anytime they choose. Moments can be from something that takes place at home or at school and can be a major life event or something as simple as somebody holding the door open for you.
“Everyone has really loved PAM,” Paul said. “It has really become the face of Pathways, I feel.”