Avery Boarman, a second-grade Walter J. Mitchell Elementary School student, recently placed in the Maryland Judiciary’s 17th annual Conflict Resolution Day bookmark art contest. Maryland’s Judiciary’s Mediation and Conflict Resolution Office (MACRO) opens the contest to Maryland students in kindergarten through eighth grade. This year, the contest garnered 3,115 entries from 54 schools. Students who place first, second and third receive cash prizes.
Boarman took second place in the kindergarten through second-grade category with her design featuring “I am Kind” in green lettering surrounded by red hearts and a girl’s drawing. Boarman said she was inspired by thoughts of being kind and how she tries to be kind to others. “When I’m kind to other people, they are kind to me,” she said. Boarman said kindness is expressed by sharing and being polite and respectful.
At Mitchell, Boarman enjoys art, physical education, and music classes. She likes playing soccer, basketball, and video games at home with her siblings.
For more than 15 years, the Maryland Judiciary has sponsored the bookmark contest asking students to create bookmarks to prevent or resolve conflicts peacefully. The bookmarks focus on resolving or preventing conflicts, apologizing, respecting differences, talking things out, solving problems together, listening, tolerance, diversity, inclusion, building peace, respecting one another, consideration for others, and alternatives to violence.
“It is inspiring to see the student’s thoughtfulness and creativity as they displayed the conflict resolution theme through their own eyes in this creative way to educate adults and children alike about peace-making and positive alternatives to violence,” Matthew J. Fader, Court of Appeals of Maryland Chief Judge, said.