picture from a girls with pearls meeting

Once a month, small groups of students at Alliance Elementary School (AES) don special attire and attend Girls with Pearls and Guys with Ties meetings. The programs are geared towards assisting students to enhance social and emotional development and encouraging them to become leaders in their school buildings and community.

The 22 young gentlemen sport white dress shirts and ties for their meetings and the 23 young ladies wear pink shirts and pearls. Both programs focus on providing lessons related to greetings, first impressions, gratitude, acts of kindness and dining etiquette. The boys have a specialized focus on community service and showing respect and the girls focus on confidence, empowerment, friendship, positive body image and making good choices.

“Students benefit from being part of a group of learners that are striving to positively contribute to their school and community,” said Tracy Lahr, school counselor at AES and advisor for Girls with Pearls. “The engaging lessons help to prepare them for life, college and careers.”

The groups meet during their lunch and recess time. While eating, the students are presented with the monthly lesson from Go Beyond the Game nonprofit. The advisors share the lessons, which often include a slideshow presentation and video. The students are encouraged to interact by sharing their experiences and answering questions. They then complete activities in their designated workbooks. The monthly meetings end with a checklist of challenges based on the lesson. The students are encouraged to complete the challenges by the next meeting. 

The programs are well established at AES and the students love to take part in them each year. Guys with Ties has been active for eight years and is led by Tim Muse, a pastor at St. Pauls Lutheran Church. Girls with Pearls has been active for six years.

To showcase their newfound skills and leadership abilities, the students have been featured on the John Hampu show and have acted as greeters/escorts for the monthly Men Making A Difference Readers and Veterans Day programs. The advisors would love for the students to have the opportunity to participate in more school activities that involve the community.

AES is able to provide this opportunity to the students through their partnership with the University of Mount Union and Go Beyond the Game.

“There is no cost to our students to be in the programs,” Lahr said. “Go Beyond the Game provides each student with the clothing, workbooks, pearl necklaces and rubber program bracelets.”

Those interested in learning more about Go Beyond the Game and the programs offered can visit their website at www.gobeyondthegame.org.

Guys with Ties Group 1Guys with Ties Group 2Girls with pearls group 1Girls with pearls group 2