February 16, 2010
We are very excited to share with you The Giving Project, a service learning based idea that we
believe will make a very positive impact on our students and the community at large.
As you know, we began the year doing Independent Reading projects. The goal was to have your
child delve deeply into books and understand what they were reading and then be able to display it for
others. As the year progressed, we started learning more about the idea of “service learning.” At its core,
service learning is simply: Use what you read as a spring board to become a giver, a “pay it forward”
Our plan is to begin by talking to our students about the 3 T’s of service learning:
Time – students can use their time to share with others
Talent- abilities that students have that they can share with others (singing, sewing,
using a computer well, playing the violin)
Treasure – money or valuables that belong to the student that would benefit others
We will begin our unit of study by reading the picture book Somebody Loves You, Mr. Hatch.
We will ask students the following questions to spark their thinking about giving in their lives:
1. What does giving mean to you?
2. Tell about a time you gave and it made a difference.
3. Tell about a time when someone gave to you and it made a difference.
Please discuss the book as well as the above questions to help your students generate some ideas of their
We will go over, in detail, our outline of what we are hoping for them and ideas of things to do. Then
we will put the project in their hands and let them run with the ideas. We all know that by putting this
project in their hands, we are also putting it in your hands, as well. We are grateful for all of the support we
receive from parents and we are very excited to see how this project will benefit our community as a whole.
In the pages to come, you will see an outline of what is expected and a calendar of events and
deadlines. We are looking forward to seeing what the kids will do and to hearing the reports of great
As always, please feel free to contact us if you have any questions.
6th grade ELAR
Kassie McMillan – email@example.com
Jodye Maupin – firstname.lastname@example.org
Erin Cuba – email@example.com
Amberlynn Hanson – firstname.lastname@example.org
Amy Evans – email@example.com
Dana Jefferson – firstname.lastname@example.org
Please sign and return this portion of the letter by Friday, February 19 stating that you have received the
instructions for this project.
Student Name:_____________________________ Parent Signature: ________________________________
Novel Movie Poster
Create a poster to show off the highlights of your novel. Think of it like a movie preview
poster, but this one is for your book. Follow the guidelines below, and look at the examples for
ideas about creative layouts. Your final poster should fit on an 8.5x10 piece of paper. Make it
neat and colorful!
Your poster MUST include:
Title and Author
Summary of the book
Get me interested, but don’t give too much away!
Main Illustration (Choose one of the following):
Redesign the cover of the book – show the main idea
through an illustration.
Main character portrait.
Write a theme statement in your own words. What
lesson is the author trying to teach you?
Choose a quote from the book that illustrates or relates
to the theme.
Create an illustration of an important or interesting
scene from the book.
Choose an important quote from that scene.
Write one sentence to describe your opinion of the book
and why you feel that way.
How many stars (out of 5) would you give the book?
Phase One: Planning and Learning
1. Students are going to be allowed to work alone or with any 6th grade student, regardless of ELAR
teacher. We are asking that the groups be kept to 10 or fewer students. If they work with a friend
not in their ELAR class, they will be responsible for making time to meet together and work outside
of class time. They are welcome to stay after school on Mondays, in any of our classrooms to work;
they just need to make arrangements with an ELAR teacher.
2. Each student is responsible for choosing a service-learning related novel. We have novel
suggestions on the walls of our hallway, and we also have a database to help find more. Groups
may choose to read the same book together, or each may choose to read a different title. We are
allowing many options for reading, so the book chosen by your child may not be available to check
out in our school library. Because of this, you might want to decide to purchase, or check the public
library, for whatever book your child wants to read.
Students must come to class on February 22, 2010 with a copy of the book
they are going to read.
Once students finish reading their novels, they will create a movie poster that will show the details
of the story. This movie poster is a great way for students to show what their story is about and how
it relates to their service idea. We want to give ample time for reading and poster time, so we will
make the next deadline after spring break.
Students must hand in a completed novel movie poster by March 24, 2010.
(Details attached) It can be turned in earlier if it is completed.
3. When planning their service project, students need to plan for the following:
Recipient of service – who and/or where will you serve? On what date can you serve?
Type of service – why do you want to do this particular type of service?
Research the area of interest – focus on a specific problem/need and get the facts
Brainstorm ways you can help in this area
Create an action plan
Phase Two: Perform the Service
Once students have met with their groups and planned out the above information, the next step is to
perform the service. When students go to perform the service, they need to be sure to bring along a
camera. Students will document their giving by taking at least two pictures of their performing the service
activity. Once they have performed their service activity, the students will be required to get a signature
from the recipient of the service. We will give students the signature form.
Students must have their service activities completed by April 19, 2010.
Phase Three: Produce a Scrapbook page
Once students have completed their reading and their service activity, they will create a scrapbook page
using the pictures they took as well as answering some reflective questions on the experience. The
students will be given guidelines for their scrapbook page. Students will have an opportunity to work on
their scrapbooks in class on April 29-30. Students will present their experience to the class on May 3-5.
Calendar of Important Dates
Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
22 23 24 25 26
Bring copy of service Meet with group and
novel to class. assign jobs.
1 2 3 4 5
Decide on service
8 9 10 11 12
15 16 17 18 19
22 23 24 25 26
Novel Movie Poster Due
29 30 31 April 1 April 2
4 6 7 8 9
12 13 14 15 16
19 20 21 22 23
26 27 28 29 30
Math TAKS Reading TAKS Working on Scrapbook Working on Scrapbook
Test Test pages in class. pages in class.
3 4 5 6 7
Presenting experience Presenting experience Presenting experience
to class. to class. to class.