This lesson plan: • citizenship • 9-11 yrs. • Life skills
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The holiday season is a great time to rally your community and use our earth friendly lunch bags to collect and deliver much-needed tools and food to needy kids and their families. This lesson provides numerous examples of what everyone can do to participate and contribute to a community over the holidays.
Identify the need. There’s no point in collecting a lot of supplies if you don’t know who will get them once they’re bagged. Call your district office and find out if there are any schools identified as high need. Or talk to local homeless shelters and food banks to ask if they can help with distribution.
Set targets. How many kids do you hope to reach? Get your math class involved in calculating the cost of one kit of essential supplies. How many kits are needed, and what is the cash shortfall if all the supplies aren’t collected. Keep these budgets in mind as you plan.
Get organized. Every successful community event is planned well in advance. Start now by contacting local businesses, banks, supply stores, and community organizations such as the United Way to ask them to start collecting essential school supplies. They can use the Tip Sheet for ideas.
Create awareness. Have students create posters and other advertising. Display them throughout the school, at community centers, libraries, and participating businesses and organizations.
Involve students. What are your students able to contribute to the supply drive? Can they hold class competitions to see which class collects the most supplies during National CC! Week? Or perhaps you’re holding a jamboree or parade. Set up a student collection committee and advertise that school supplies will be collected at the festivities. Have students man the collection sites and distribute information about the drive such as how many kits you hope to create, who else is participating (businesses, banks, etc), and who will benefit.
Make the kits. Use our earth friendly lunch bags to create the kits. Create checklists so packers can make the kits up correctly. Don’t forget to include information about who was involved in the project, and CHARACTER COUNTS! in the kits.
Distribute. If you are working with a food bank or shelter find out in advance if they can arrange a pick-up. Often for heavy loads they offer a free pick up service. If the school district is involved, coordinate pick up among faculty and staff. If you are working with local organizations, perhaps asking them to help with pick up could be part of their involvement.
Make it meaningful. Don’t stop at collecting supplies. Make sure the students understand the need and have them conduct research projects into the social demographics in their communities. Even if the students themselves are recipients, they should also be able to study how community collaboration works, and think about what they can do next to be a good citizen and continue demonstrating good character throughout the year.
Working With Others Standard 1. Contributes to the overall effort of a group Level IV Benchmark 7. Helps the group establish goals, taking personal responsibility for accomplishing such goals