(Pictured: Seventeen Wylandville Elementary fourth graders volunteered with an adult at the Canonsburg Food Pantry.)
At the elementary level, TEAMology is taught.
“TEAMology’s mission is to understand and improve emotional health in order to give every child access to the support they need to succeed in school, career, and life.”
As the fourth grade teachers taught one of the characters, Harper who stands for helping others, they thought about ways the students could “help others” in their community. Fourth grade teacher Mrs. Surich remembered going to the Food Pantry with her daughter when she was in fourth grade at Muse Elementary and decided to provide the same experience for the fourth graders at Wylandville.
Mrs. Surich reached out to Darla Rhome, one of the organizers, at the Canonsburg Food Pantry in November to schedule two months of volunteering for the fourth graders at Wylandville. All of the fourth graders were given the opportunity to volunteer in March or April with an adult. Seventeen fourth graders signed up, half went in March and the other half will go in April. Each student and his/her adult were at a station. They handed out hygiene items, paper products, canned goods, rice, mac & cheese, ketchup, hotdogs, coffee, baking mixes, bread items, frozen chicken, ham, etc. to those who needed them.
They were able to practice communication skills by politely interacting with the people as they gathered their items. Volunteers were responsible for restocking the items when needed. When asked what could be collected to assist for the next visit in April, it was suggested that cereal be donated to bring with them when they return again. This opportunity was not only enjoyable for all of the fourth grade volunteers, but also an extremely rewarding experience.