Though many of us don’t like to admit it, our “worlds” often exist in a secluded bubble that portrays only the best and brightest of Metro Manila. Whether it be at High Street, Greenbelt, SM Aurora, or even at school, we are often oblivious to the suffering occurring right outside our very walls. The service programs at ISM, however, allow us all to break down that wall for a little while, whilst engaging with some of the harsh truths of the Philippine local society.
Throughout High School, service is an element of high significance and recognition. However, in recent years the Elementary School has displayed their potential in this area as well. ES is involved in various service programs, both within and outside the school. The ES garden, for example, located in between the ES playground and the MS courtyard, is a fertile patch of land that allows the ES students to develop and cultivate their gardening skills. In addition, the ES are big supporters of many of outside service partners such as Berdesaco and PCF, as they are regular donors and promoters of the recycling at ISM. In other efforts to promote service learning, the teachers also strive to integrate similar topics and skills into the curriculum itself.
From a very young age, service learning allows children to put things into perspective. Combined with their learning from school, interacting with the less fortunate in the community allows students to dispel some of the information or biases they may pick up from the media or home, and focus on seeing people as they truly are. Involvement in service learning also instills an ethic of service in the children, and gives them a responsibility to better develop their sense of social responsibility and awareness. Inaddition, service programs encourage the development of leadership and collaboration skills that can be utilized in all areas of their future.
Article By: Erin O’Reilly
Photographs By: Ashley Miller