For their spring service learning project, grade 3 students at Trinity School in Menlo Park created a walk-through exhibit sharing real-life stories of children forced into factories, fields, and mines to exploit child labor.
Posed with the question ... "What are problems you are aware of in the world?" ... the students brainstormed and voted on their topic.
Kim Thacker, service learning coordinator at Trinity School, was somewhat surprised at the interest the students had in the serious concept of child labor. She provided them with pre-screened and age-appropriate articles, stories, and photographs to use in their research.
The students worked in groups or individually to express their impressions and stories in words, drawings, and photos.
"The day in the life of ...", a two-part poem, compared the story of a free child to the life of a child sold into a child-labor factory. These reflections are powering the next questions for the students: "What can we do to help?"
The students raise money for service projects and they are choosing to send a portion to organizations that help rescue kids in labor and provide them with education.