Sincere thanks to Tomoko (Grade 12) for her time, patience, compassion and an ability to relate to people of all ages. She got her message across clearly. It is not easy to balance the factors around homelessness at an age appropriate level, but you can see from the video Tomoko did this.
On a walk in the park we noted a man sleeping on the bench. We were very quiet and careful not to disturb him. The children had many questions about why the man was there. We wrote all these down. What could we do with these questions? How can young children think about service learning? How do we develop the reciprocal nature of service: giving to others, and the learning that comes from this experience?
We want to be able to use the children’s questions to connect to our unit of inquiry, “People create systems to connect people.” We asked Tomoko to come and talk to the children about the YIS Sanigatachi centre initiative of night patrols, where high school students and teachers go and talk to the homeless people and offer conversation, supplies and soup.
The children expressed a desire to be connected to these groups and wanted to know what they can do. They were interested in making clothes, giving food and making things for them. We will forge a strong connection from the children, to service groups and into the local community.
This is just a short amount of the wonderful conversation.