Taking Time to Lend a Hand
November 15, 2021
A few years ago, I had the privilege of watching a group of hardworking students put on a charity fundraiser. Now, when you hear the words “student fundraiser” you probably imagine a tiny bake-sale that nets a few nickels and dimes. This was something much different. For starters, the students were divided into teams – one raising money for space exploration and the other for sustainable habitats on Earth.
Secondly, these students weren’t just canvasing for support. They had spent the past few weeks learning about environmental protection, soil health, and positive rhetoric. Then they took what they had learned and created commercials to share their knowledge with the world. Working together, both teams managed to raise over a hundred dollars for their individual charities. It’s truly amazing what students can accomplish when they channel their learning into a positive mission!
Get Started in Your Classroom
Every teacher knows that their students have the potential to change the world, and right now, there are a lot of people who could use a helping hand. Around the world, millions of talents are going to waste because people lack the resources to get started. COVID-19 has also devastated many small, independent businesses. Forcing many people to rebuild their livelihoods from scratch. By mobilizing our students, we can teach them important educational lessons while also lending a hand to those in need. Here’s how you can get started:
- Fish Out of Water: This game teaches students about natural resources and capital goods through a fast, fun, action-oriented engineering activity. Students are tasked with catching (fake) fish using a variety of different resources. The catch is the best resources are too expensive to afford. After a few minutes of effort, students are provided with a small loan that allows them to buy the Ultimate Fish Catcher of Doom. This activity is the perfect introduction to cooperative economics and microloans.
- Craft a PSA: Encourage students to make an engaging, informative PSA about a charity movement such as #TeamSeas. After teaching students about the characteristics of an effective public service announcement, give them the opportunity to create their own. Students can create a poster, a persuasive video, or even a podcast where they encourage others to lend a hand.
- Start a Letter Campaign: Our leaders are elected to represent the people, and a big part of politics is letting them know what you care about! Have your students pick an issue that matters to them and compose a thoughtful, respectful letter to their local congressional representative. This allows students to practice their spelling and vocabulary while also taking a stand for something they care about.
- Pitch a Fundraiser: Set up your classroom for a fundraiser pitch competition and welcome local judges to pick a winner. First, have students select a charitable cause to raise money for (such as a microloan from Kiva). Then, have them pitch their fabulous fundraiser ideas. If they need help sparking their creativity, consider some of these to get things started.
Be a Force for Good
If you found these activities helpful, consider checking out the Blue Apple project, Lend a Hand. Blue Apple is a provider of project-based learning units which help make learning, memorable, meaningful, and fun! Working with your students, you could make a real difference to someone in need. Just imagine if thousands of kids just like yours, all around the country, made small investments today that would have an immense impact on communities around the world. What an incredible way to make the world a better place!