Seventh graders at The Summit Country Day School’s Harold C. Schott Middle School awarded two $1,000 grants through Magnified Giving to help people with Alzheimer’s Disease and children with physical, emotional and developmental challenges.
The grants for the Alzheimer’s Association of Cincinnati and Building Blocks for Kids were coordinated through Magnified Giving’s Student Philanthropy Program. Summit seventh graders made presentations at an award ceremony at Twin Lakes Retirement Community, attended by Magnified Giving board members, donors, parents and students from other schools.
The process leading up to the check presentation took about three months, according to Middle School religion teacher Laura Dennemann. It is part of the seventh grade Character Education capstone project, a year-long, cross curricular examination of accountability.
“They start in religion class learning about philanthropy and how they can use their time, talent and treasure to help others,” Mrs. Dennemann. “They each chose an agency; sent emails to make contact, incorporating Language Arts into the project; and looked at their financial documents, incorporating the math curriculum. Back in religion class they presented a ‘Top Ten’ video to their classmates with reasons why they should support this nonprofit.”
In each seventh grade religion class, students discussed and debated until they came to a consensus to support one agency.
Then they started a campaign to promote the agency. They made commercials and posters. They gave a live, one-minute pitch at the school’s Bible Bowl. After these pitches, those in attendance at the Bible Bowl voted, and the winner was announced. “Since we were eligible for two $1000 grants, they were able to present checks to the top two agencies, Alzheimer's Association and Building Blocks for Kids,” Mrs Dennemann said.
“This process allows our students to lead from who they are, where they are,” says Lower and Middle School Director Mike Johnson. “They have the chance to research a passion, learn the presentation skills required to communicate that passion and to then manage the accompanying emotions all while impacting their community for the better.”
At the Magnified Giving award ceremony, Mrs. Dennemann said, “The student representatives did a fantastic job of presenting their work and reasons for choosing these agencies.”