Program helps children be ‘amazing’

by Becky GINOS

KAYSVILLE—Be yourself because you are amazing. In a troubled world, that’s the message third graders at Snowhorse Elementary wanted to send through a musical program they presented to students and parents last week.

“I created a program called ‘We are Amazing’ because I wanted to help them know they’re amazing and they can accomplish their goals, dreams and aspirations regardless of their situation,” said Bobbi Hansen. “Six or seven years ago I felt a need to do something to help teachers and administrators to pay back those who helped my kids growing up.”

The mother of seven said she had worked with children for years in after school programs and in a variety of other capacities. “I wanted kids to believe in themselves and others, realizing each of us has abilities and strengths,” she said. “We can celebrate that and it doesn’t diminish ours at all. It enhances them in the bigger picture.”

She created the program then had professionals write the songs. “Each child can experience it in their own individual way,” said Hansen. “In their own mind they can quietly feel what they need to because of their own story or situation while at the same time caring about their peers.”

Third-grade teacher Jana Bottomly said she heard about the program through a parent of a student in her class. “We don’t have time to teach this in class but it’s so much of what kids need,” she said. “She came in for 12 days and taught a song a day. Then she gave a lesson about abuse, bullying, how to believe in yourself, reaching for the stars and finding your potential.”

Bottomly said Hansen told the children there would be stormy days but to hold on. “There’s so much mental health need to do this. I was amazed at how great it was,” she said. “It exceeded my expectations. The kids were totally touched by her stories. It’s the stuff we don’t get to (as teachers) but they need it.”

It is obvious how much Hansen loves each child, said Bottomly. “She connected with them and they believe they are wonderful, amazing and can do anything.”

The sessions lasted about 45 minutes and Hansen would teach a new song every day. “It’s crazy that they could learn a song in one day,” Bottomly said. “She’d share personal experiences and show them how the choices they make will lead them in a certain direction.”

Bottomly has even noticed a shift in how the children in her class interact with each other. “The community has changed a little bit in our room,” she said. “They have a little more respect for each other and they realize we’re all amazing. We just have different strengths. We can all benefit by loving everyone and treating people kindly.”

“I want the children to be who they are,” said Hansen. “They don’t need to feel like they have to be someone else. When you try to be someone else you’ll fall short. The best person is you. Be the best at that. It helps bring out the strengths in each other.”


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