Although this quotation doesn’t mention education, it does make a great point about how we teach our children. In school, we encourage students to learn so they can eventually “make a living” and succeed on their own in the world. But do we teach them how to “make a life” by volunteering and giving of themselves?
Many children have required community service hours for school or other organizations, so don’t miss your chance to turn this time into a learning experience. Volunteering and community service can build character and may result in some of the most rewarding experiences of our lives. Show your online school students the importance of giving back to your community and helping others in need by volunteering as a family.
To help ensure enthusiastic participation, look for volunteer opportunities in your local community or select a cause that your family is passionate about. Try some of the community service ideas and volunteering websites listed here to find an activity near you.
Ways to Volunteer
If your online school student wants to try a specific volunteer opportunity in your area, look online for websites of local organizations. Here are some examples of community service and volunteer opportunities to look for:
- Work at a food bank or soup kitchen.
- Tutor younger students.
- Participate in community cleanups.
- Visit a nursing home.
- Work at an animal shelter.
- Help out at the library.
- Walk or run for a fundraiser.
VolunteerMatch helps volunteers, business leaders, and nonprofit organizations find ways to give back to the community. On their website’s home page, type in your location and a few keywords. To find volunteer opportunities for kids, try using keywords such as “children,” “kids,” “students,” “families,” or “learning.”
Habitat for Humanity
People of all ages can join Habitat for Humanity to help build a house for a family in need. In their youth programs, there are different teams and opportunities for children ages 5–8, 9–13, and 14 and up. There’s also a team for teachers, parents, and youth leaders. Another benefit of volunteering with this organization is that children can stay involved when they are adults.
Do your children love animals? Looking for opportunities at the Humane Society is an effective way to get them interested in volunteering. Browse the website’s free lessons for students in elementary school, From Nose to Tail: Lessons to Inspire Care and Compassion for Dogs, which promotes empathy and animal advocacy.
GenerationOn is the youth division of Points of Light, a large volunteer organization. With sections for kids, teens, parents, teachers, and organizations, the website directs users to information on community service clubs, project ideas, family volunteering, and service stories. Children can visit the “Clubs for Kids and Teens” page to find resources and volunteering activities in your area.
DoSomething.org is a nonprofit organization specifically for volunteers ages 13–25. The website has plenty of information on campaigns and causes that volunteers can get involved in, and the organization even offers internships and scholarships.
Volunteering for community service with your online school students is a wonderful way to demonstrate your family’s values in action. As your children help others, they will gain an understanding of the needs in your community and develop empathy and compassion. Additionally, your online school students will have fun, make friends, and gain social and leadership skills—and that will make volunteering an enjoyable and rewarding experience for the entire family.
To learn how you can be more involved in your children’s education and have the flexibility to layer volunteering into the family schedule, visit the website for Connections Academy® online public school. Or to learn about online private school, visit International Connections Academy’s website.
This article originally found on Connectionsacademy.com