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Spreading Kindness and Appreciation Brings Joy to Others

Leslie Bowen
DCD’s annual service-learning day honoring Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. fell on the civil-rights activist’s actual birthday this year. His inspirational quotes decorated the school’s hallways as students engaged in various projects by grade meant to serve others.
 
Third-graders made posters for the community to show their appreciation, including one for all the hard work of the employees of the Dedham Post Office.


Dedham Postmaster John Connolly wrote, “USPS Dedham thanks you, the team loved it!”
 
“It’s so great for our students to see the impact of their support,” commented Head of School Allison Webster. “The identity kids develop as people who take action and serve others is such an important part of their DCD education!”
 
They also made posters for the staff rooms at CVS, Shaw’s supermarket, and The Linden at Dedham senior assisted living center, which also received Valentine’s Day banners from the class.
 
Other projects celebrated communities closer to home, serving others in their own DCD community. Fifth-graders painted pots and planted herbs to bring joy to DCD faculty and staff for their service-learning project. Some pots featured original haiku verses celebrating kindness and appreciation as thanks for making school happen this year. Hopefully, the herbs will sprout in time for spring planting!
 
Kindergarten students in Mrs. Maloney’s class sent smile-gram packages to selected faculty and staff. The children made smile spirals, poster-size letters, and individual cards. Fourteen lucky staff members received a package, including Communications Director Leslie Bowen, who has been working remotely this year. “I’ve missed seeing the kids. It definitely brought a smile to my face. It made my day to open the package and see their messages,” she said. “What a surprise!”
 
First-graders created a bulletin board and a flower project to thank the DCD community. Additional service-learning projects benefited the wider community. Pre-K students baked cat and dog treats for the ARL; Cheryl Price’s kindergarten class made cards to send to patients at Winchester Hospital; second-graders held a walkathon for the Make a Wish Foundation; fourth-graders made plans for their annual Fun Run to benefit the Dedham ARL; and, fifth-graders wrote letters to their representatives and senators asking them to support bills they would like to become laws in addition to their project of potted herbs for faculty and staff.
 
 
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