Tracy Will spreads positive messages across West Michigan with the help of students


Positive messages seem to be a rare occurrence in society – while everyone is constantly consuming copious amounts of media, there’s a clear lack of positive reinforcement, and math teacher Tracy Will felt that something had to be done to remedy this problem.

Will enlisted the help of her BOOST club to get students together to paint positive messages on rocks at lunch on Thursday of Ranger Strong week; this project is part of a larger group, Color West Michigan. The group’s Facebook page is filled with image after image of rocks that anyone and everyone can find, similar to an accidental scavenger hunt. The rocks have a tag placed on the back that tells the finder to visit the Facebook group to share their achievement, and rocks painted by FHC students have the hashtag “#FHCRocks” so that these rocks are distinguishable from the many others found.

Will may have spearheaded the movement in FHC, but she was inspired by seeing similar programs all across the state and even further.

“I’ve been a member of the group since this summer; it was something my whole family got pretty into. There are groups around the nation that do something similar, but we’re doing the one in West Michigan,” Will said. “I see it as a really great, positive thing to do.”

Sophomore Shay Keaton helped Will with organizing the whole progress, as she originally learned about it through Will’s geometry class.

“I think it’s really great that we’re doing this, leaving these rocks all over Grand Rapids,” Shay said. “We just want to spread kindness and positivity, and [this is] a really cool way to do so.”

Will says that she hopes this little act of positivity can brighten up someone’s day or at least give them something interesting to share with their local community.

“I just saw a post where someone found a rock and shared it on Facebook saying that it made their four-year-old’s day,” Will said. “The goal was so that people can find a fun little inspiring message that they probably didn’t expect. Maybe it’ll help them out in some way!”

While these nuggets of positivity lay nestled around West Michigan, Will hopes that this can help bring a more uplifting attitude and energy to the school.