Social skills are an important part of our curriculum, and community service is a component of building those skills. This year’s eighth grade students did community service for their eighth grade project. Each student wrote a proposal in October for their service. On May 14th, students presented their projects to the community. Their presentation boards are on display in the upper hallway, and two pictures are included here. Please visit the upstairs hall if you can!
Projects included working at:
Animal Talk, a non-profit, no-kill animal shelter
Serenity Equine Rescue, an equine rescue and rehabilitation program
Family Works–student taught knitting after school to clients of Family Works. This was a student-created project.
Youth Suicide Prevention Program; student worked with other teens to increase the program’s visibility to young people.
Boys and Girls Club, coaching basketball for second grade girls
Treehouse for Kids, an organization for foster children
Earthcorps, an environmental restoration program
World Impact Network, a food bank in Bellevue
One student played music at retirement homes through the Seattle Conservatory of Music.
One student created and executed a fundraising event to benefit Water First International, an organization that works to provide communities around the world with a safe water supply.
Each of the students spoke of the benefits and surprises in the work they did. Nels S, who organized a fundraiser for Water First International, had to find an effective way to communicate his event, and navigated a lot of administrative details (insurance, background checks). Arielle D, who taught clients of Family Works how to knit, spoke of a Roosevelt High School freshman she met who was moved to the U.S. from Ethiopia a few years ago. In getting to know this new friend, she learned that her peer often played the role of translator for her mother and accompanied her to doctor’s appointments and so forth. She also learned some knitting terms in other languages. Stella S, who coached second grade girls’ basketball at the Boys and Girls Club, talked about the impact of competitive sports on young children. She had wanted to play competitive sports as a youngster, but her parents ‘wouldn’t let me!’. Stella shared that having coached young children, she now sees that competitive sports at that age are not appropriate, and that skill-building and fun is where she would like the focus be.
When asked whether they would continue their volunteer work, each student said they would. It was an inspiring evening!