The School for Ethics and Global Leadership

SEGL launches second semester of Books and Basketball community service program

Date: Sep 21nd, 2012

“What do you do for fun?” It is a question many prospective students and parents ask when they see our challenging curriculum.There are many, many answers to that question: improv comedy, ballroom dancing, the Washington Nationals, the SEGLympics (stay tuned for the first edition!), the DC Roller Derby, visits to DC’s most famous neighborhoods, ultimate frisbee on the Mall. One of our favorite answers is our “Books and Basketball” community service program at Thomson Elementary, a Title I DC public elementary school.

Each Wednesday afternoon, our 24 students spend 30 minutes reading one-on-one and in small groups to dozens of DC’s most underserved 1st and 2nd graders. Afterward, we spend 30 minutes coaching basketball to the same students. Many of the students’ parents do not speak or read English. Many come from challenging economic and/or family situations. For many, this is the only extended one-on-one reading time they will have all week. Few of them have ever played organized sports. All of them are bright, hard-working, and full of love.

Through a partnership with Modell’s Sporting Goods, we are able to provide basketballs (just the right size for tiny hands); Thomson provides books. Together, we are able to help the students improve critical reading skills and fine motor coordination. A special thank you to first grade teacher Katie Solli for helping to arrange such a meaningful endeavor.

We hope the pictures in this post convey the fun we have working with these kids.