METHUEN — Every Wednesday students from kindergarten to the 12th grade at the Fellowship Christian Academy in Methuen take a break from their studies and go out into the community and give back.
“We thought it was important for the students to learn how to give back to their community,” teacher Stacy Osborne said.
The program is a new one, that started this year. On Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays students have extended days to focus on academics. During the morning on Wednesdays, students do some community service and then have their electives in the afternoon.
The projects have ranged from volunteering at libraries to soup kitchens. Students are also committed to random acts of kindness or mercy, doing things like buying strangers a coffee at the local Dunkin Donuts.
“They absolutely love it,” Osborne said about the students. “We have done so much. It’s hard to remember it all.”
One of their more successful projects was when the students made blankets for the homeless. Osborne said this is a project students hope to do again.
“They had a lot of fun with that one. It makes such a positive impact that I think they really responded well to the project,” said Osborne, who teaches grades six through 12 at the school.
Wednesdays have become the student’s new favorite day.
“The other day I heard a student say, he hoped it didn’t snow on Wednesday because he wanted to go to school,” Osborne said. “That’s how much they enjoy it.”
Osborne says that this program teaches students the importance of compassion and helping those who are less fortunate than them.
“I think they learn more on Wednesdays than they do on any other day,” she said. “It’s important for them to learn how to serve other people. The parents have been really supportive of the project.”