05/24/2012
My Voice My Community
"A, B, C, D Hunger Is Not Good For Me!"

3rd Graders March to End Hunger

Talk about a force to be reckoned with! On Tuesday, May 8th, Lisa Hantman and her 27 third graders marched from McCall Elementary School (at 6th & Spruce) all the way to Senator Casey's office (at 20th & Market), chanting anti-hunger slogans and wearing t-shirts decorated with similar messages.

They carried over 1,050 paper plates emblazoned with their slogans, drawings and facts about ending hunger. Their goals were to raise awareness about hunger in our community and to ask the Senator to support anti-hunger programs and initiatives.

The students have carried out numerous service activities to fight hunger. For instance, they collected over 800 cans of food during their “Soup-er Bowl of Caring” this winter and delivered them to Philabundance.

They’ve also connected their service-learning topic to the curriculum in many ways. Their teacher writes: “Doctors and nutritionists have come to speak with us – there’s loads of science and health in the malnutrition area. So much writing and reading is done to prepare and research. We did a terrific activity in math and science on the cost of eating. We will make a difference, which is social studies at its most natural.”

The students – who recently won a “Student Voice” award at Need in Deed’s Shout Out – were the driving force behind every aspect of their project. One student even wrote a grant! “The ideas spring from their hearts and minds and form in the classroom,” says Lisa. “We are studying hunger and increasing food distribution. Also, we are engaging many others, which, hopefully, will help with the issue in years to come.”

The march to Senator Casey’s office was their culminating activity. Although the Senator was not available, one of his top aides met with the students, accepted the paper plates, and promised to bring their message to the Senator. Check out a short video here!

It was a long walk, but the students' enthusiasm carried them along - as did appreciative claps and waves from passers-by. When asked if she thought that her class had made a difference that day, one student answered: "Well, yeah! We made so many plates, and everybody in the city saw us walk with them. We're helping end hunger." Agreed!