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Aaron School Students Give Books to Underserved Communities

  |   45th Street, Middle School, Special Programs

Dana Laxer, School Counselor at 45th Street


Aaron Middle School students have been hard at work during Alliance, a weekly class focused on community service. Throughout the year, our 6th and 7th graders have been learning about what it means to be a member of various communities, and ways they can help other community members through acts of service. In keeping with this year’s literacy theme, the students recently completed their second major service project, this one focused on our wider New York City community. To support our local community, the students worked together to hold a schoolwide book drive supporting Project Cicero, a nonprofit organization that provides books to classrooms and libraries in New York City public schools in need, free of charge.


Middle schoolers began this project by learning about Project Cicero’s mission and how the organization impacts students who do not have access to very many books at their respective schools and neighborhoods. They watched videos about the organization to discover the path that donated books travel to ultimately make it to the teachers who work at the schools in need of books. They also examined which types of books that could and could not be donated to benefit these schools. Next, using Get Ready, Do, Done – a learning strategy adopted at Aaron School that helps students plan, organize, problem-solve and complete tasks using a “backwards planning” model – students brainstormed the steps needed to execute a successful book drive. Students also created eye-catching signs and posters, and authored letters to advertise the book drive to members of our Aaron School community. They even reminded us of the book drive over the school PA system during our daily morning announcements.


Over a two week period, students from all grades collected books from home and proudly delivered them to the large collection boxes in our school lobby. By the time Project Cicero came to pick up our donations, the Aaron School community had completely filled the three large boxes that were originally provided, as well as three additional large boxes! Teachers were so impressed by our students’ efforts and grateful for their families’ generosity, and cannot wait to repeat this project in future years of Alliance. For our final community service project of the year, the middle schoolers will be organizing and running our annual school store to raise money for a global literacy organization.