Drive for Supplies (environmental: reduce, reuse, recycle)
Understanding Homelessness (poverty)
Help the Homeless Mini-Walk-A-Thon
Approximately eighty-five Banneker Middle School students participated in a local Help the Homeless mini-walkathon around the community to raise funds for two local organizations (Montgomery County Dental Clinic and Threshold Services). These organizations contacted the school indicating their need for funds to keep their services in our neighborhood. Students decided the walkathon would be an efficient way to raise awareness and money. Students advertised, coordinated, pledged, participated, and reflected on the project as a group. We raised over $1200!
The Graffiti Project
The Graffiti Project was a very successful service project that involved over 75 students in 6th, 7th and 8th grade. This was a partnership project sponsored by the National Council to Prevent Delinquency (NCPD). Research Director, Ms Faith Weilder was their project coordinator. The culminating activity was a beautiful student mural depicting the values, goals, and themes of Julius West Middle School. The installed mural contains 40 panels and is 144 feet in length. It was installed in the school cafeteria so all students are able to enjoy the project and reflect on the values and themes of our school.
Elementary School-Wide Service
At Somerset Elementary, we have developed a K-5 sequence integrating service-learning as a teaching strategy with other aspects of the Montgomery County curriculum, where each grade has a focused curriculum area that integrates our MCPS academic indicators, curriculum standards, character education connections and service opportunities. Each grade level project is further connected to the county guidance five domains: personal development, academic development, interpersonal development, healthy development and career development. The school counselor addresses these domains through school-wide assemblies, classroom lessons, and small-group meetings.
The Learn Shop, Inc.
Our school conducts and annual school supply and clothing collection for those in need.
Walk for the Cure for Diabetes
My service-learning club planned a yard sale at the school to raise money for the Walk for the Cure for Diabetes. More than 30 students, mostly sixth and eighth graders, volunteered. Two weeks later we then went downtown and participated in the walk and donated over $2000.00. More than 20 students and parents participated in the walk.
Maryland Service Club Stencil Project
The fourth grade PACE students in the Maryland Service Club at Carver Elementary School in St. Mary's County performed their last community project of the school year in early June, 2000. The students in Carver's Program of Advanced Challenge and Enrichment (PACE) applied for a grant from the Chesapeake Bay Trust under the direction of Carver's Instructional Resource Teacher (me). Through this authentic writing activity, the students received funding to stencil "Don't Dump" on the storm drains in the Southampton neighborhood around their school. Students learned about the importance to "Save the Bay" in this community project.
Helping Victims of Hurricane Mitch
The 7th and 8th grade students on the Quest Team at Eastern Middle School took an elective class on service-learning through which they raised materials and money (indirect service) to benefit people who had been affected by Hurricane Mitch. We specifically worked with a sister-city organization, Project Gettysburg Leon, which had a 15+-year history linking citizens of the US with people in Nicaragua. The Eastern students studied about contemporary Latin American issues and learned about the difference between humanitarian aid and long-term development (prevention). They studied global economics and socio-economic status, and they learned specifically about the methodology of service-learning which includes preparation, action, and reflection. The students finally taught other students in classes around their school about the underlying causes of the devastation of the hurricane and advocated help for the Central American residents who were set back 30 years economically. (Poverty and the economics of underdevelopment are underlying causes of the gross devastation; if Hurricane Mitch had hit Florida, not Central America, estimates are that 100 people would have died, not 1100.) More than five packed carloads of clothing and supplies were gathered, and over $1000 in donations were raised by Eastern Middle School students. More importantly, many students came to better understand how their own lives and lifestyles affect people in other countries, and how they are really capable of having a positive impact on many people's lives.
Kids Sew for Kids
Students develop sewing skills as part of the curriculum and then use their skills to complete service projects. Students survey the community, sew various items for people who are sick or children in need in the area, and reflect upon their work. Projects include clothing, stuffed animals, beanie babies, and drawstring bags to mention just a few.
1996: "Operation Teddy Bear" students collect stuffed animals for the homeless shelters. Students also go to senior centers for one hour to interact with the seniors at a day-care facility.
1995: Our students serve severely and profoundly handicapped students and ESOL students right here in the building on a daily basis. ESOL students translate documents into Russian, Spanish, Bengali and Korean for Montgomery General Hospital.
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