Service Learning and the Season of Giving at PHPS
PHPS is a wonderful place where our students can grow academically, personally, and spiritually while embracing their skills and talents. But it is also a place where students gain the meaning of service and giving, whether in the form of love, kindness, care, compassion or by donating gifts to others in need.
In this “Season of Giving”, our school reflects on what the spirit of giving genuinely means and provides many opportunities where our young students can express generosity. It really isn’t just meant to be a season, but rather a way of life, and we believe this needs to begin in a child’s formative years.
What is Service Learning? Service Learning is when an educational institution offers service activities that link human and community needs into its learning environment.
At PHPS, the Community Service Committee organizes several outreach programs and activities for the students throughout the school year. Students help coordinate the effort by making videos about the organization, drawing posters to hang throughout the school, and even going to the facility itself to help volunteer (stock shelves, drop off donated items, etc.) Some examples are:
- Making cards for troops to send overseas (through music station Country 96.3)
- Donating gifts to Vogel Alcove Holiday Store where parents of homeless children can shop
- Purchasing and wrapping Angel Tree gifts for low-income families
- Donating warm coats to MLK Jr. Arts Academy
- Collecting canned goods for North Dallas Shared Ministries
Additionally, PHPS’ school counselor, Mrs. Plifka, provides monthly SEL lessons. For the months of November and December, she is focusing on empathy, gratitude, generosity, and compassion for self and others. In these lessons, our students discuss and collaborate openly on these characteristics to gain a further understanding of their meaning and how they can make a difference within our school community, the local community, and at home. This could be something as simple as inviting a friend over for a playdate, or picking them to be on their team during recess, asking them to sit with you at lunch or work on a school project together. In the end, we want our students to think about how to put more smiles on faces because there is no better feeling in the world than watching someone smile because of something YOU did.
No matter your definition of giving, there are so many ways during this Season of Giving to bring joy to others, and the PHPS community proudly embraces this culture with our students!