Peace Day celebrated by Montessori School

COVINGTON -- In commemoration of the International Day of Peace on Friday, the Montessori School of Covington will host a Peace Pole Ceremony at 2 p.m., and is encouraging the community to attend.

Students, staff, parents and members of the community will gather around a peace pole at the school, located in Clark's Grove neighborhood, to sing, reflect and share what peace means to them and take a pledge to practice peace in their lives.

"School children all over the world will celebrate at the same time in honor of and in hope for international peace," said Maria Granito, lead teacher in upper elementary at the school.

At the event, Rotary Club of Covington will recognize the Montessori School of Covington "for consistently and diligently embedding peace and conflict prevention and resolution into both the school environment and curriculum," according to Nicole Fleming, event chair for Rotary. Club members will present peace tokens to students during the ceremony.

"The school prides itself on having a peaceful environment," Granito said. Students are encouraged to work out peaceful resolutions to conflicts by sitting down at a peace table and talking things out, Granito said. In addition, students of varying ages and grade levels learn together in one classroom, encouraging students to interact with older and younger peers.

International Day of Peace was established by a United Nations resolution in 1981 to coincide with the opening of the General Assembly. The first Peace Day was celebrated in September 1982. In 2002 the General Assembly officially declared Sept. 21 as the permanent date for the International Day of Peace.

This year, special activities and celebrations will take place all across the world over the 2012 Peace Day Weekend, including festivals, concerts, a global Peace Wave with moments of silence at noon in every time zone, and more. Details can be found at www.internationaldayofpeace.org.

According to the website, "Anyone, anywhere can celebrate Peace Day. It can be as simple as lighting a candle at noon, or just sitting in silent meditation. Or it can involve getting your co-workers, organization, community or government engaged in a large event. The impact if millions of people in all parts of the world, coming together for one day of peace, is immense."

International Day of Peace is also a Day of Ceasefire personal or political -- and individuals and organizations are encouraged to make peace in relationships and make an impact on larger conflicts.