Ways to avoid cussing: walk away, cover your ears and don't listen, count to 10, ignore it, sing a song, say a substitute word or words (such as "Oh, man!"), calm down, breath in and out slowly, cover your mouth, and if you're a kid, tell a grownup that someone is cussing.
Third-grade students at Mingus Springs Charter School in Chino Valley want to spread the message of "no cussing" not only at their school but in their community. So they started the "No Cussing Club." And they want kids and adults alike to take the challenge not to cuss.
Teacher Susan Romney said her students really care about the project. With material from the website, www.nocussing.com, the students wrote a skit, then performed it in an all-school assembly Nov. 26.
"The class accepted the challenge to not cuss, and the entire school can get certified and wear 'No Cussing Club' wristbands," Romney told students and teachers at the assembly.
The students also want to challenge everyone in the community and hope to speak at clubs, other schools, churches and more. Those wanting to arrange a skit performance, can call the school at 928-636-4766.
Every student, each wearing the club's identifying orange color, has a part in the skit - from narrator Dilynn Ingram, to sign holders Carter Kubin and Aiden Free, cheerleaders, pairs of students who read parts of the club curriculum, and others who pass out candy and wristbands to students in the audience and who answer questions throughout the skit.
Carter's and Aiden's signs read "who, what, where, when and why" about the reasons people cuss. Although a serious subject, the "no cussing" skit had some humor in it, too. For example, two readers of the "where" part in the skit, said, "Where do people cuss? At school, on the bus, at home, on the bus, at the mall, on the bus, at the park, ON THE BUS!" Get the point? A lot of cussing happens on the school bus.
Sometimes it's hard to stop a habit like cussing and often people don't realize how much of their language is cuss words or how much it makes those who hear it uncomfortable. That's what motivated a boy from South Pasadena, Calif., to do something about the problem.
Fourteen-year-old McKay Hatch started the "No Cussing Club" in 2007 because cussing bothered him. He first mentioned the problem to his friends and those around him, challenging them to stop cussing. Many of them told him they didn't know how to stop, so he started the club. Word of the club and the challenge spread, and soon the club got a website on which people can take the challenge. Now McKay has participation from people worldwide.
During the Mingus skit, narrator Dilynn asked the students in the audience to tell about a time they cussed. Several students told personal stories, including a boy who remembered riding in a car with his mom when another car cut them off in traffic. The close call scared the boy, and as his mom swerved to miss the other car, he yelled out a cuss word. "I said the f-word," he said.
Talking about the problem through the "No Cussing Club" not only brings it to others' attention but also gives them practical ways to change their language. The website says the change also helps reduce bullying among kids.