My Voice My Community
Portraits of slain children motivate 2nd grade class

"Protecting Every Child's Dream"

Nancy Goldschmidt’s 2nd grade class at McClure Elementary School took on a tough issue with their service-learning project: gun violence. The springboard for their project was an exhibit at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts called “Lost Dreams on Canvas,” which features 150 portraits of innocent victims of random violence.

Motivated by the portraits and stories of these slain children, each student wrote a pledge to a family whose child was represented in the exhibit. Their pledges include a description of their dreams for the future and a declaration describing how they will address violence in their community. The pledges and student artwork are all collected in a book Ms. Goldschmidt arranged to have published. It’s entitled Protecting Every Child’s Dream.

Read the pledge of second grader Luis Caraballo:
"When I grow up I want to help people crossing the street. When I grow up I want to be a policeman. I like to dream about being a policeman. My friend Romuel is going to be my partner."