Can anyone give me some community service ideas involving children?

Question:This program in my town is led by high school seniors and is trying to reach out to 4th graders at one of our elementary campuses. The aim of the program, which is designed around the Nickleback song "If Everyone Cared" (haha) has a focus based in getting the class of 4th graders to renew their interest in school. Currently the program is only being designed, and isn't completely set up yet. So I have a few questions:
1) What do you think is the main reason that students lose interest in school? What factors influence their school experience?
2) What kinds of things can the program do to expose the children to worldwide issues and to instill in them a sense of community-wide and worldwide leadership?
Thanks!

Answers:
As a teacher of 11 years, I think the main reason why children are disenchanted by school is that teachers and management themselves do not really have enthusiasm in many respects. While it is true that this is far from the main reason, I think the lack of willingness and apathy many teachers feel when confronted with low wages and a distinct feeling of "those who can't" puts us in a mindset of not doing the best we can. Yes, teachers have it tough in many respects. But the love of teaching and the sense of accomplishment that one feels overcoming the deficiencies of the system and the management despite the negativity should also mean something.

As for community-building, there are many ways a responsible school can do to awaken the students to the needs and opportunities for betterment in their own community. Take the children to the local hospital for morale-building programs, for example, with old people and the pediatrics ward. This is a great eye-opener if done properly (for example, don't take the whole class. Don't take the class clown with those he/she wishes to impress. Take the cool gang separately. etc - as a teacher, I assume you know your kids.) No age is too young. Take the kids to the local pound. Have them work with a vet. Take them to the homes of the elderly and have them do the small chores for those people. Give them responsibility. Be patient, but be firm. It works. Slowly and gently, it works wonders. Good luck.

A great message: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tpog1_nfd...
I work with children all the time and kids always tell me they hate school because of homework and mean teachers. The other thing that comes up a lot are people picking on them because they arent "cool". Things that influience them are there peers alot this is the biggest one. Girls dont want to act smart because boy will not like them for example. Have the kids go to a ophange and bring a toy and work with other kids. Have kids collect food or clothes and then have them go and take it to different people. have them go sing xmas song to elderly people. There are so many things that kids can do to show leadership and to also show the world there are still good kids out there.
Contact local United Way. They can help give you ideas and contacts
Students lose interest because there is nothing they find value in - regarding their future. Music, video games, TV all offer entertainment, school is no longer entertaining or taught in a manner that children can relate to or feel a connection to. Becoming a sportsstar means money and freedom. becoming a Dr or lawyer means more school, repayment of loans and maybe a job in a good hospital but with many hours of work. Which glorified profession would you choose with these criteria?

Make helping and community service fun. See projects through to the end. Teach children that if they stick with something from start to finish there is a reward, even if it is not monetary.
one community service that you could involve them in is organizing fundraisers for their school, and anothesr one is painting a mural in their school that has something to do with their school motto or theme. That would get thyem thinking about it and pretty soon they might have ideas of their own. But don't ask them too many times. They might pretend they really don't care, but deep down inside they actually do.

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