Food Sharing: Our Fall of 2011 Service Learning project was all about food sharing and hunger. In January we learned about feelings and specifically focused on feeling hungry. We learned that being hungry can make our tummy’s hurt, we might feel tired or even make bad choices. Then we spent February learning about the many ways we can share with our friends. We introduced the concept that some people don’t have enough food to eat and the children thought of ways to help these people.
Then we decided we could ask our family, friends and neighbors to help us gather food and we practiced doing this in class. Students were then ready to go out into their community to collect food for people who need it. We collected over 200 items!
Assisted Living Garden Project: The Fall of 2012 we combined our focus on gardening and aging by creating and giving fairy gardens to some elderly residents at Medlock Gardens Assisted Living.
To build background knowledge we collected photos of each of the children as newborns, babies and toddlers and explored the different things that you can do at each stage. We acted out, played games, sang songs and had puppet shows to deepen our understanding. As we progressed through the stages of child, teenager and adult, we used photos of family members and specially chosen books to learn about the new things to look forward to being able to do in those stages of life. When we finally discussed older adults we talked about the things we did with our grandparents and what a memory was. We used books such as Wilfred Gordon McDonald Partridge to learn about older adults who need extra help to do things that we are able to do every day.
The children then brainstormed things that we could do to help older adults who weren’t able to take care of themselves feel happy. The kids suggested flowers, balloons, strawberries and blueberries, music and singing. To accomplish this task, we planned a full day of fun at the community rec center. We met up with a group of active older adults called the East Lake Easy Goers to help create the fairy gardens. We created the gardens, shared a snack, had a music and a yoga class and enjoyed the time working with a community group to create the gardens for Medlock Gardens’ residents. We will also have a special time to deliver the fairy gardens so the children can meet some of the adults who will receive the gifts.
Conservation and Earth Day Project: Spring 2011 & Spring 2012 – NMCP students learned about conservation and hosted an Earth Day event with stations they designed. In 2011 this event was hosted at Edgewood Church and in 2012 it was hosted at Bessie Branham park. Our second year the event attracted over 100 families!
Peace Service Project: In the Fall of 2013 we explored the meaning of peace. We collected peaceful images, listened to peaceful music, participated in peaceful yoga and art and read books about peace. We used the Peace book by Todd Parr to anchor our learning. The children decided to create a peaceful mural to hang on display on our playground so we can be reminded of peaceful ways to play with one another. Each child added their unique part that highlighted how they felt the most peaceful.
Diversity Service Project: In the spring of 2014 we learned about our differences. We learned about physical differences such as skin color, hair texture and color, eye color, gender and size. We also learned about the differences in how people move around like using a wheelchair, crutches or cane. We learned about different feelings and different preferences like what we eat and what we wear. To celebrate our differences we held a community performance where the children presented their own puppet show scripts to teach that being different is something to be celebrated.
Music Service Project: In the Fall of 2014 we focused on the power of music. We experienced how it can change our feelings and our actions depending on the mood of the music. We read many books such as “Mole Music” by David McPhail to explore how sharing music with others can bring happiness and joy. The children decided to bring music into the city and wanted to sing at a train station. On a Sunday afternoon we organized a trip to sing at a Marta station and share the power of music to bring happiness to others.
Spring 2015 Project: Coming Soon!