Gandhi said, “Be the change you want to see in the world.” Here at Chestatee Elementary School that is just what we strive to do. Chestatee is a Title 1 Family Friendly School located in northern Forsyth County. Our school consists of students from all walks of life. Each student loves coming to school every day and knows that students at Chestatee are Responsible, Respectful, Problem Solvers.
Our school has implemented the 7 Mindsets curriculum which is designed to teach the whole child and develop mindsets that will help them be successful for the rest of their lives. The program helps build students’ self-esteem and develop meaningful relationships. One of these mindsets focuses on generosity and is titled “Live to Give.” To help our children find meaning in the mindset of Live to Give and give them a concrete avenue to demonstrate the mindset, we started the “Live to Give Club.”
This year is our first year as an afterschool club. Our club meets once a month and has over 40 members ranging in age from Kindergarten to 5th grade. Each month our students gather together to brain storm ideas and check in on current service projects. Since our first meeting, the club has already made a huge impact in the lives of the students at our school, in the community, and globally.
Our club raised awareness about the importance of protecting the earth. The students stayed afterschool and picked up trash, worked on our outdoor gardens, and pulled weeds in our school flower beds. The kids saw firsthand how leaving trash or neglecting the earth can affect the appearance and cleanliness of our school building. We are helping students develop a sense of pride in their school and a desire to care for the world around them.
Next, our club planned, implemented, and advertised, a letter writing campaign to send 1,000 letters to our troops. We had conversations about expressing gratefulness to our military personnel and how it is important to care for those who protect us. The children chose letter templates, delivered them to classes, appeared on the morning news to promote the campaign, and encouraged their individual classrooms to join the campaign. Students colored in a large poster each time we reached an additional 100 letters. The whole school took part and our goal was exceeded with over 1,000 letters expressing our gratitude for their sacrifice. The letters will be sent to the troops in time for Thanksgiving.
Currently, our club is working on a service project to make blankets for the children at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. The children brought in fabric, created designs, and will be completing the designs and sewing the quilts soon. Each project was imagined and implemented by children.
Students in the Live to Give club have a mission:
“We are Chestatee and we will…Do all the good we can, by all the means we can, in all the ways we can, in all the places we can, in all the times we can, for all the people we can. We can live to give!”
Each meeting starts with this motto and has been the driving force behind the club and the projects. Check out our efforts and please consider rewarding the generosity these children have shown. Living to GIVE from the heart. Giving of their words, time, and money to be the generation that makes a change.