Q. Tell us about your school programs ….
A. I am radio host Benny DL (a.k.a. Bruce Langford) from ATFM radio. We are broadcasting live from your school. The children form the studio audience for the live broadcast which features original songs sung by DJ Benny DL, call-ins from listeners, and time spent with the studio audience while commercials are being played to those listening to their radios. Students are mesmerized by this live format which offers constant variety and interest for the students. We bring special lighting, sound equipment, and the set to transform your school gym into our temporary studio. For older students (grade 7 and above), we offer an alternative format which features videos, discussion, questions and answers, and role play. We also do presentations for adults and combined adult/youth audiences.
Q. What types of suggestions do you offer to bystanders?
A. The program speaks to bystanders in a major way by repeatedly emphasizing that it just takes one person to speak up against bullying behaviour. That person could be YOU. This message is delivered right away in the first (theme) song called ‘Stand Up’ (JK-6 shows). It is also a powerful component in the junior show in a song called ‘Be Your Own Person’ where all the students get involved by chanting ‘Speak Up’ at certain times in the song where it fits into the rhythm. Students are also integrated into the program by doing role play. One child is shunned by others who are obviously a group of friends having fun. Subsequently, one student makes the move to be kind and eventually the shunned student is accepted by the group.
Q. How does your program speak to adults?
A. The powerful message of our program is definitely valid for adults as well as students. It only takes one person to make a difference and that person can be you – no matter what your age!.
As adults, we need to be reminded that children can be victims of bullying behaviours, and not want to tell anyone what they are going through. Teachers are encouraged to attend performances with their classes. We can only make a difference when we all get involved!
Q. Can you expand on your basic philosophy and how you put that philosophy into action in your programs?
A. Our basic philosophy is that we need to convince people to ‘Stand Up’ against inappropriate, bullying and disrespectful behaviours. Throughout our JK-6 programs we hand out prizes to the students who can correctly answer the ‘skill-testing bullying questions’. This really gets the students tuned in and listening.
The more you emphasize that people need to have the courage to be different from the group and speak up against the bullying behaviours, the more chance some of them will pick this message up and begin to do it. After all, it only takes ONE person to make a difference in how a bullying incident will end up. As adults we need to realize that this message needs to be constantly delivered to our children – in whatever various ways we can do it. That’s why we provide follow-up packages for teachers with all our programs including worksheets and a CD or DVD. CD’s and DVD’s contain songs which can help kick off class discussions. Teachers can have students sing along with the recordings. Start the day every day for a month singing favourite selections. The students will love it – even if it’s only one verse. (That would only take about 30 seconds a day!)
Q. What is the optimum number of students per program?
A. Our maximum for a program is 200, but the optimum number is 75 to 100.
Q. Do you have a comment on JK and SK students attending?
A. Yes – they will definitely benefit from the program. They love the entertaining aspect of it, and will pick up the messages. While they may not comprehend the presentation in the same way the older ones will, we believe they will learn significantly from it. This program will give their teachers an opportunity to discuss the topic later in a way they can understand.
Q. Does your program contain live music, video clips, drama?
A. Yes it does. Live music is something most kids can relate to and learn through. Our children have grown up with video and it is just amazing how powerful a video clip can be for our children. One of our songs is in the form of a music video which we recorded with children from grades 4 to 8. Audiences of all ages seem to relate to it in a positive way. We have students participate in role play. This is also something which results in the students really connecting with the message. Older students (gr 7 and up) and adults will appreciate the discussion format which encourages audience participation. Everyone will have a chance to speak using the cordless microphone which Bruce constantly takes into the crowd.
Q. Are you approved by the Thames Valley District School Board?
A. Yes. The program is not only board approved, but is being financially endorsed by the board as well. Here is an excerpt of what Mr. Ray Hughes (Former Violence Prevention Coordinator, TVDSB) has to say:
“As part of the Safe Schools Anti-Bullying initiatives, I am pleased to inform you that we have established a partnership with ‘A Time For Music Productions’. This program uses music to engage students in preventing bullying …… Bruce has devoted considerable energy and time to this project and I’m sure that you will find it to be a positive learning experience for your students”. We have presented in fifteen different schools boards and our list of visited schools is growing fast. Not only are we supported in our home area around London, but we receive positive endorsements from schools on a regular basis.
Q. When can we book you for an appearance?
A. Give us a call or send us an email. We’ll let you know how soon we can book you in – likely in the next two or three months. We look forward to hearing from you!