TEACHING KIDS TO CARE
Twice a year, we at DoubleTree Beach Resort by Hilton teams up with our adopted school, M.K. Rawlings Elementary in Pinellas Park, FL, with a corporate-wide DoubleTree program called “Teaching Kids to CARE”. Each spring and fall, we have a special lesson plan to teach to the students, which usually involves going “green” with recycling efforts, planting trees for Earth Day, or donating food to less fortunate around the holidays.
Our Spring Teaching Kids to CARE event with the first grade students of our partner school, M.K. Rawlings Elementary was a success! We decided to share the CARE by introducing the 110 first grade students to some of our CARE Culture concepts. We started with a fun activity, helping the students make a name tag highlighting some of the amazing things they each have to offer like their favorite subject in school, hobby & one thing they are really good at.
It was great to connect with the students and show them that despite their differences, they all had many things they could appreciate about one another. We talked about the importance of kindness and treating others with respect and dignity, because everyone is amazing in their own way. Our team told the students all about the Friendship Bench that was donated by our Team Members…a place where students can go to sit when they need a friend, some support or reassurance. Then we shared our Daily Brand Values with the students and encouraged them to come up with words of kindness to decorate their new Friendship Bench.
The lesson was made even more meaningful because the Friendship Bench is made locally in Florida from 100% recycled materials. The students were amazed to see what recycled water bottles and car tires could be transformed into! We ended the lesson by giving each student a delicious chocolate chip cookie and a rainbow colored “I’m Amazing” bracelet provided by the “Tiny Girl Big Dream” Foundation!
The new Friendship Bench has a permanent home in the school’s Teaching Kids to CARE Garden. Take a look at some of the amazing photos that were taken during our visit! We look forward to returning to the school in the fall to paint the different words of kindness on the Friendship Bench, as well as seeing all the future students who will learn the valuable concepts that this Friendship Bench represents!
Here’s a picture of the Friendship Bench, complete with all the words of kindness and encouragement that the students chose:
We celebrated Global Week of Service in October 2014 with all 130 2nd grade students at M.K. Rawlings Elementary School along with one of favorite our community partners, Suncoast Seacoast Sanctuary. Ralph Heath, founder of the nearby Suncoast Seabird Sanctuary, brought a baby seabird to show our students, along with real examples of how proper recycling can make a difference by keeping harmful materials out of the reach of animals, humans and seabirds! We followed up with the same group of 2nd grade students for the “Clean up the Community” Follow-up Lesson in November to see how much they’d learned from our previous visit.
In Spring 2014, we teamed up with the 3rd graders at M.K. Rawlings Elementary with our “Grow a Garden” lesson plan! As always, our Teaching Kids to CARE team works hard to make our lessons meaningful to our local community. Since Florida is a great source of locally grown produce, meat and seafood, we had a lot to talk about! It was amazing to see how much the 3rd grade students already knew about this topic.
Our Executive Chef spent time asking the students what foods they enjoy eating and talked about how he makes the food in our restaurant taste great by sourcing ingredients from nearby sources, which cuts down on carbon emissions from delivery vehicles & supports local farmers and fisheries. He also passed around examples of fresh cut herbs for the students to experience with their 5 senses as we discussed how herbs grown in our own gardens can make the foods we eat taste spectacular! Finally, we helped our students plant herb gardens of their own from seeds (using recycled milk containers they saved from their lunches) and we left each teacher with a potted herb garden to grow in the classroom. At the end of each lesson, we shared our “cookie care” by leaving all 120 student and teachers our favorite treat… a delicious chocolate chip cookie!