Showcase

Project Profile

Project Title:
Learning about poverty in our community - how we can help.
Initiative:
The value of eliminating poverty
School Name:
Mary Queen of Peace
School board / First Nations school jurisdiction:
Eastern School District
Project Theme:
  • Engage [active & participatory citizenship]
  • Care [poverty]
Grade Level:
6
Subject Areas:
English, French as a Second Language, Social Sciences and Humanities
City:
St. John's
Province/Territory:
Newfoundland and Labrador
Community Partners:
We will seek out a partner in our community where we can help by donating articles of clothing for children.

1 / 2

Learning about poverty in our community - how we can help.

We study need in our world in grade 6 and will focus this year on understanding need in our community. It's sometimes easier for students to have a passive understanding of developing countries, war, child labour, poverty, and hunger. We are going to plan an activity that can help families with children who are struggling in our own community. We also hope to highlight the needs of children in our community through music.

Update (April-22-15)

We are an Intensive Core French class, so only started our Language Arts and Social Studies curriculum in February. Since then, we've been working hard learning about places in our world where citizens are not as fortunate as we are, and for what reasons. We've been also learning that while our needs are not the same as those in countries where they seek clean water for survival, the needs in our communities are very important. We're learning about the various organizations who provide help to those in need of a meal, a shower or clean clothing. We will visit a place to see what can be provided to the citizens and we'll also go to another centre where the students will help prepare a meal and serve it. We are looking forward to it and will update soon.

Update (May-20-15)

On Wednesday, May 13, our class had a two-part field trip. In the morning, half of the class travelled to Gower Street Church in St. John's where they set tables and prepared a lunch of grilled cheese sandwiches and salad. After the preparation was done, the other half of the class arrived and the first half went back to school (the kitchen area of the church where the Gower Street Lunch Program takes place is fairly small, so only half of the class could go at one time). The second group of students grilled the sandwiches, organized the beverage table and served the lunch once the guests started arriving. After an hour, the kitchen was closed and the students helped clean up by washing dishes and putting things away into cupboards.

This field trip was a very rich experience, as it focussed in on the needs that are evident in our community and also permitted the students to work together towards a common goal. When asked what they learned from the experience, the responses went from, ‘…it is very easy to help…’, ‘…helping can be enjoyable…’, ‘…people are welcome and aren’t judged. They are treated with respect even if they have a troubled past…’ and the realization ‘…that I should be very happy for what I have…’ and ‘…not everyone has a home or a family or even someone to care for them and all they need is a little bit of love…’.

Recognizing that poverty exists in our community is a harsh realization for young children. Taking the step from talking about it in class, to seeing it and doing something to help brings a reality to the curriculum that truly makes a difference for grade six students.