At the heart of The Center for Early Education’s mission is a commitment to the community beyond the School, and community service is an integral part of the student experience.
The Center firmly believes that learning can be deepened through service to others. By connecting the traditional school curriculum with civic-minded projects, our school attempts to both reinforce academic principals and instill in the children a strong sense of compassion and caring for others.
Students have the opportunity to participate in several community service trips during their time as elementary students at CEE. In multi-aged groups called Families which consist of two to three children from each grade level, students travel to organizations throughout the city with whom we have developed a partnership over the years. From delivering Thanksgiving food from an all-school drive to the Blind Children's Center in November to visiting dear friends at the Watts Senior Center in May, the school year is marked by these trips and by the students' return to campus, where they teach their classmates about their experiences.
The Caring Place and all EC classrooms incorporate service learning project on the topic of hunger in their curriculum. Their efforts include making soup and baking cookies and breadsticks to be donated to the Greater West Hollywood Food Coalition, an important local institution that has been serving the hungry in our area seven days a week since 1987.
The project offers the early childhood students the opportunity to learn and share in the mission of our school. We hope to inspire them to be grateful for what they have and to find joy in sharing with others. These themes of thoughtfulness will continue to be explored througout the children's Center experience.
Kindergarten through sixth grade students experience a curriculum that ties together subject areas such as social studies, reading, and science with various aspects of service. Third graders teach their kindergarten buddies about water conservation throughout the year, exemplifying the connection between a cross-curricular opportunity and collaborative service learning. And other grade levels sponsor drives and events that bring the community together in an effort to provide food, toys, and books to those in need. All along the way, classrooms are filled with rich discussions about what students are doing and why, with the goal being to empower young people to work together in an effort to change the world.