Today i volunteered with a fantastic event at Clemson Elementary. Buck-A-Book is a service project the First Grade at Clemson Elementary does to raise money for Clemson Community Care. There are so many reasons i think this is a great event. First, we are teaching our children as young as 6 years old that you are never to young to make a difference and to be involved in a service activity. The kids knew exactly what their project and mission was! Parents, grandparents, friends and siblings came today to pay a dollar and let a child read to them. Most parents bought multiple tickets and had a lot of children in the various classroom read to them. The children lit up every time someone handed them a ticket and asked to hear a story. So many good things came out of today, the kids got great practice reading books, Clemson Community Care received extra funds, parents, grandparents and friends got a chance to see the children in the classroom and hear them read and afterwards the kids practiced counting tickets and figuring out how much money they raised!
As a volunteer, i felt immense pride today to be a part of Clemson Elementary. I love that we have the opportunity to help with such a worthy cause. As volunteers we sold tickets, served as greeters and “direction givers” at the door and helped make sure all the classrooms stayed on schedule. I have an immense respect for the teachers at our school. In addition to their teaching duties, they always take time to come up with creative ideas like this one that incorporate learning and service. They rely on volunteers to help carry out the events, but much of the work is done by them. Experiences like this make me want to seek out more service opportunities in my job and more ways i can go the extra mile!
I realize that i have only blogged about the events i have volunteered with not the behind the scenes helping. I love all of the events we volunteer for and the preparation like decorating eggs is definitely not “work” for me but a great escape from everyday work! But, I have also been involved in other aspects of volunteering with the school as well. I have volunteered to assist the teachers when needed with projects such as making copies, cutting out projects, binding “books”, organizing shelves in the classroom, etc. What i learned from this experience has been that there are so many ways you can be involved and help. I am very fortunate to have a flexible work schedule that i can go during school hours and help, but i know a lot of parents that would love to do that but don’t have that luxury with their jobs. What is great though, is a lot of the things i have done behind the scenes like cutting and assembling projects i do at night or on the weekends. For parents or students with a non flexible schedule there are still many ways to help and make a difference. They say where there is a will there is a way and i believe that to definitely be true with volunteering!
Well, it is that time of year again, Spring is here which means Easter is right around the corner. When you are in the First Grade a big part of Easter is of course the Easter Egg Hunt! 2 other moms and myself have spent the last week preparing for the big hunt for 2 of the First Grade classes at Clemson Elementary. Each child got to hunt 6 eggs filled with coins (which we then counted and practiced our money skills), 1 special egg decorated with their names and filled with treats and then of course have a special sweet treat. For yesterday, we served ice cream sandwiches and juice boxes. Although the thermometer said 82 degrees it seemed much warmer! Everyone had a great time and the kids especially loved their coins! Being a volunteer at the elementary school truly is a treat and doesn’t seem like work at all!
Today is one of the most fun and interesting events we have at Clemson Elementary. Families within the school cook dishes from their countries and you buy tickets to go around and taste! It is amazing!! Today I ate in Mexico, Italy, Libya and America! Volunteers are used to make the foods, man the tables, help with crafts and do the behind the scenes set up and clean up. Today i helped man and serve the America table. We offered hot dogs, pop corn and chips. We were VERY popular with kids who were not very adventurous :) One of my favorite parts of the day is the parade of costumes from the various countries, it is neat to know my children will have friends from all over the world! I have attached two pictures, one of me working at the America table and the other of my daughter Caroline’s friend in their Korea costume.
Friday I had an awesome time at Clemson Elementary School. Every First Grader dressed up as their favorite famous American. They each came on stage and told us a little about who they were. There were many Betsy Ross’s, Martin Luther King’s, astronauts, Helen Keller’s and my favorite was Sandra Day O’Connor! As volunteers, we helped transform the cafeteria into an “America” theme stage. We also helped organize brunch, set up tables and assist the teachers wherever needed. As in any school situation, you are there to help with the unexpected as much as anything! The children and their families had a wonderful time and the teacher’s were excited to have so many helpers!