This post was written by Jennifer Edgar, CLC’s Lead 2nd Grade Teacher.
Inspired by a Tallahassee Democrat news story, 2nd grade self-initiated a service project to benefit the Gulf Specimen Marine Lab this past month. The lab, which has recently launched a fund-raising campaign to purchase a new “Ozonator,” has been attempting to raise $38,000 towards replacing this integral piece of equipment—equipment used to purify the water pumped from the Gulf to be used in the marine lab’s tanks. 2nd grade, most of whom have visited Gulf Specimen Marine Lab and touched the many sea creatures housed there, were fired up and ready to help. The children plotted their entire action plan-from posters, to collection jars, to a bake sale-resulting in a $270.86 check they hand delivered to the Lab.
Such an effort reflects our school’s core virtues in action. Compassion. Respect. Self-Discipline. Perseverance. The students demonstrated all of these and more.
Their care, concern, and empathy translated into a class-wide dedicated commitment to writing speeches, designing and creating marketing materials, and organizing and running a bake sale. Math. Reading. Writing. Not to mention learning about the marine animals and the lab’s animal rehab program. The project included numerous layers of learning, each with a direct outcome to their goal: helping the lab raise the money to better serve the needs of our local ecosystem.
Drawing on the inspiration of Rosie the Riveter, the phrase “We Can Do It!” became the rally cry of the students throughout the project. The net outcomes? Money raised, for sure. A great visit to the marine lab. An increased capacity to initiate and run a fundraiser. And, perhaps most importantly, a sense of agency and empowerment – the cornerstone of life long learning and key building blocks of tenacity and grit.
Students who graduate able to persevere toward their goals are students who have experience persevering toward goals. The opportunity to do so in an educational setting sends a subtle but powerful message to children: “Your agency and voice matter. You make a difference.”
Thank you for being so service- minded, 2nd grade, and thank you to all of CLC for contributing to their cause and supporting their efforts.
Move, over, Rosie!