Entries in Acorn January 2012 (1)


Everyone Can be Great because Everyone Can Serve

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. is known for his outstanding work in the civil rights movement, but his later years were filled with a desire to encourage participation in service learning. When it comes to service to others, the words of the late Dr. King ring loud and clear-“Everybody can be great because everyone can serve.” As the 26th anniversary of the King Day of Service approaches, plans are well underway to make service learning an enduring component of a Wood Acres education.

Wood Acres has always been an altruistic school and quietly participated in charitable projects such as the Smile Train, St. Jude’s Hospital, Jump Rope for Heart, MUST Ministries, UNICEF, and Cool Girls. This year, the school will “raise the bar” by developing a template for service learning that begins with our two year old students and grows in scope through 8th grade. To help us focus our efforts and learning, Wood Acres will choose an area of philanthropy each year that resonates with our school community. Our focus this year is “Feeding Young Minds & Bodies: Literacy and Childhood Hunger.”

What have we done so far? There has been conversation, discussion, research and reading about service learning as well as literacy and childhood hunger. We have learned much and want to tackle it all! But we also have learned that to sustain service learning and make it contextual, experiential, and cross-disciplinary for our students, planning and revising those plans will be one of the driving forces of this first year. The great thing we have discovered is that small steps are celebrated, small projects grow, and dreams become school-wide realities very quickly when one puts both head and heart into the programming.

Coretta Scott King said, “The greatest birthday gift my husband could receive is if people of all racial and ethnic backgrounds celebrated the holiday by performing individual acts of kindness through service to others.” We plan to do just that! Please join us on January 16th for a day of service on the Wood Acres campus as we learn and grow to become great. 

Judy Thigpen
Head of School