Washington Court House City Schools’ Cherry Hill Primary students will once again participate in “Service Learning Projects” through Lions Quest.
According to its website, Lions Quest is a social and emotional learning program funded by the Lions Clubs International Foundation. The curriculum nurtures a positive connection to school and peers through character education and positive behavior development. Topics covered in this school-wide curriculum also include anti-bullying, drug, alcohol and tobacco awareness, as well as leadership skills through service learning.
“We knew we had to take a preventive approach in addressing those outside factors, such as drugs and violence, that undermine student success,” Cherry Hill School counselor Amy Jo Morris said. “To grow students in a positive direction, we had to teach more than traditional academics. With the support of the Lions Club, we piloted the Lions Quest Social Emotional Learning Program in selected classrooms during the 2016-17 school year, and the program was implemented building-wide during the following year.”
Through Lions Quest, students work hard all year to learn how to manage their emotions, make informed decisions, resolve conflicts, and set and achieve goals. Engaging in service learning creates opportunities for the students to apply those academic, social and emotional skills to address real-world problems and needs. These projects allow students to have meaningful experiences that extend beyond the classroom. It is the hope of the school that participating in service learning will help students develop empathy for others and instill pride in their school and community.
“We are extremely proud of our Cherry Hill Little Lions,” Morris said. “It is amazing to see the project ideas that emerge from these creative young minds. They spend multiple weeks investigating ideas, planning and preparing, and then carrying out an action plan. To watch their faces light up when they see the good they are doing is priceless.”
Morris took the time to show off four of the projects completed this year.
‘Pets That We Love’
The first was Mrs. Eckles’ kindergarten class completing “Pets That We Love,” with the Fayette Regional Humane Society.
“A special thanks should be given to the children in my classroom for working hard to learn about dogs and cats, making dog treats, and for their families who donated many items that the shelter can use for the pets such as blankets, collars, leashes, food and treats,” Eckles said.
Madison in the class said, “I want to be a vet when I grow up so that I can take care of these pets who don’t have a home.”
Donating homemade goods to help animals
The second project was completed by Miss Drake’s second grade class. For their project the class learned about proper treatment of animals and how animals in the community need help. The class learned how animals become homeless and what can be done to help them survive and find homes.
“We made blankets, rope toys, and my artistic students made ‘adopt me’ posters,” Drake said. “Special thanks to humane agents Brad Adams and Nick Marando for providing our students with humane education and bringing Bran, a small kitten, for our students to interact with.”
Class members Haley, Amaya and Khailyn, all said they enjoyed doing the project. They enjoyed that each person got to do something different and it was fun.
Hygiene kits for the homeless
Mrs. Elliott’s second grade class decided to make hygiene kits for the homeless shelter. The intent was for the people being served to be able to take a hygiene kit with them and have it when they are staying in places other than the homeless shelter.
“We also wrote cards and put them in each kit, hoping to brighten up their days,” Elliott said. “We included toothbrushes, tooth paste, shampoo, body wash and deodorant. Some kits had a few extra items as well. Thank you to the families in our classroom who donated the supplies so that we could create these hygiene kits.”
Class member Jessie said, “We wanted people to feel better and to feel loved. We hope they like their kits.”
Donating to the children’s hospital
The final project Morris showed off was Mrs. Blair’s kindergarten class collecting over 200 items to be donated to the patients at a children’s hospital.
Class member Alexia was excited to help because, “My mommy takes care of babies at the hospital,” she said.
Finally, Colt said “When I had to stay there I was not allowed to walk. I played with games, colored and watched TV.”
Morris plans to release more completed projects in the near future to display the exceptional work of both the students and teachers.
The information in this article was provided by Cherry Hill School counselor Amy Jo Morris.
Reach Martin Graham at (740) 313-0351 or on Twitter @MartiTheNewsGuy.