Why teach philanthropy?
By Jessica Dieken
As adults, we’re responsible for making sure kids grow up with the right tools, skills and knowledge so that they go on to be productive and responsible members of society. Teachers are on the front lines of what we, as adults, are striving to achieve in preparing and nurturing today’s youth. Teachers spend countless hours prepping lesson plans, researching ideas for ways to engage students in different subjects all while straddling the line of helping students discover their passions and ensuring their meeting Common Core standards. We appreciate what all teachers are striving to do – creating and nurturing that spark for learning in young people.
One area of learning we want to help teachers pursue is philanthropy. Teaching and inspiring kids to give back not just when they’re older, but at their current age. Cultivating the passion and interest in giving back can begin at any age – and the younger children learn about the importance of giving back, the more likely they are to make it a part of who they are as the grow into adults.
But why teach philanthropy? A recent UK Study, Growing Up Giving: Insights Into How Young People Feel About Charity, found that young people are interested in and positive about charities and have “great charitable expectations”. Interestingly, the report finds that schools “lie at the heart of the bond between young people and charities” and is the primary means by which charitable giving is encouraged.
Kids spend so much of their time in school and are on the hunt for both knowledge and purpose. Teaching philanthropy is just one way to help students learn Common Core concepts like reading and writing, as well as develop important social skills, problem solving, reasoning and empathy.
But how can teachers cram something else into their already limited and over-scheduled day? We want to help teachers do what they do best, and we recognize the challenges that educators face in resources and time. That is why we developed a philanthropy education curriculum called Project Heart. Designed for 4th and 5th grade, Project Heart combines Common Core standards with philanthropic education to help teachers not only prepare students for their next steps in school but also to inspire them to do, give and be more.
And it is our gift to teachers everywhere – we’ve absorbed all costs associated with Project Heart.
Teaching kids to be philanthropists is important and it is possible!