At the beginning of the semester, each Island School student is paired up with a ‘buddy’ from Deep Creek Middle School. Every Thursday at precisely 1:10 we meet at the flag pole and prepare to travel to DCMS to help them work on their final projects. There are a variety of projects ranging from AIDs and HIV awareness, to self-image for girls. Each group is a team of 6, three Deep Creek Middle School students (9th, 8th, and 7th graders) and their three Island School buddies.
This past Tuesday was no ordinary Community Outreach. Our group piled into a van and headed over to Tarpum Bay primary school for our drug awareness event led by Patron, a 9th grader at DCMS. Our group of 6 stood up in front of a class of 6th graders for the culminating event. We performed a short skit to educate about peer pressure and drug use. After the skit, Patron asked the kids questions about what they had just learned. It turns out we had left the questions we prepared at the school so we all had to wing it and come up with questions on the spot. The kids were eager to participate and with each question, around 10 hands shot up. After we exhausted the questions, Patron took the kids to the basketball court to show them the safe and fun alternative to drug use. We played three different basketball games which lasted around an hour and a half. Towards the end we got to take a break and cupcakes, lollipops, and lemonade were handed out. The kids were very excited to be outside, and it turned into a family event where cars stopped to watch and siblings came to join us. Although it veered a little from the drug education, overall everyone had a great time and Patron was so proud of how well his big event came together.
The group came back to the school with a sugar high and exceeded expectations. We had missed advisory time but it was well worth it. Our class had turned into an adventure and our buddies had become our close friends.
Last Saturday, May 18, Island School and Deep Creek Middle School students put together a cancer plastic awareness night. This picture shows the Deep Creek student leaders and their teachers that helped coordinate the event.
From left to right we have Kristal, Shawnea, Breanna, and Mr. Simmons. The night was a big success and raised money to help the cause.
This picture shows the students in the plastic awareness group presenting their project. They are from left to right: Tyrin, Matt, Peter C, Kylisa, Jack, and Garric. They presented their project and showed the harmful effects of plastic on both people and the world. Both the cancer group and the plastic group prepared amazing videos to demonstrate the goals of their project. Excellent work by both groups! At the event, Continue reading →
Yesterday we had our final CO class with our DCMS buddies. In Grade 9, we have been talking a lot about food on Eleuthera, and food in general, so our buddies came to Island School so we could watch a movie called King Corn. The movie was about how a main ingredient of our diet is corn, and how corn has been genetically modified so it can be processed. One thing from the movie that resonated with me was a scene where they took a piece of a man’s hair, and showed him that even his hair contained corn in it. From soda to hamburgers to chips, most things that we are eating contain corn, and this is shown in our bodies. We were not able to finish the movie and watch the section that talks about solutions to this problem, but I really enjoyed watching the movie because I didn’t even know how big of a problem this was.
After watching the movie, we went over to DCMS for the Basketball Jamboree. [slideshow]We got out of the van, and the smell of conch fritters and fried chicken was in the air, music was playing, and kids were shooting around on the basketball court. Continue reading →
“Tingum in da bush ain’t gat no name!” – Grade 7 students and their buddies explore the native plants found in Eleuthera’s “bush”
Grade 7 Students of DCMS and their “buddies” from The Island School are on a journey to educate themselves about the natural heritage of our islands. We are partnering with 40,000 schools around the world in the eco-schools federation to make a brighter greener future. Bahamian schools are focusing on the often-overlooked issue of native biodiversity.
To date we have:
Planted more than 100 native seeds.
Carved out a forest trail in the native forest behind the school.
Educated ourselves and each other, on the medicinal uses of native plants. High lights include – the cascarilla bark used to make Campari liquor, sage, which can treat measles and “chick pops” (as we call them here), the delicious pigeon plum, the ubiquitous gum elemi and its dangerous companion poison wood.
Identified the key invasive species threatening the Bahamian ecosystem.
On Monday September 24th the entire student body of DCMS eagerly ran to the vans parked outside, in excitement for their weekly buddy visit with The Island School students. Together, The Island School students and DCMS students work on a service project for the community. The grade 8 DCMS class and their buddies are focusing on supporting a health initiative by local non-profit One Eleuthera. They are helping One Eleuthera design and conduct educational outreach for the organizations healthy eating and health gardens initiative. This week the group learned about compost so that they could serve as the experts in later outreach events.
Experts at The Island School were interviewed by the students and provided excellent insight into each projects focus. The grade 8’s started by working with Joseph, who brought students to “compost land” Continue reading →
In Community Outreach class this semester, grade nine DCMS students and their Island School buddies are tackling a topic that profoundly shapes all our of lives: food. How does food inform our cultural identities? How does what we eat affect our bodies and the environment? How do world events influence food availability? How is our current global food system unfair, and what can we do about it? By sharing home-cooked meals, taking field trips to farms, getting our hands dirty in the garden, and interviewing numerous Bahamian and international food experts, we look forward to exploring these questions.
We started things off today with a food scavenger hunt. In buddy pairs, students found examples of local and imported foods and interviewed Deep Creek farmers, storeowners, and residents—as well as had fun eating frozen tamarind cups and getting to know each other.
Over the course of the semester we have worked closely with Deep Creek Middle School to help improve problems facing the community here on Eleuthera. Our group assisted Moesha Leary’s project on Haitian Bahamian relations in attempts to combat the discrimination of Haitians in The Bahamas. Moesha, her DCMS peers, and their Island School Community Outreach buddies planned an event to educate the community about Haitians’ culture and to celebrate the similarities and differences between Haiti and The Bahamas. The event was a success and had a great turn out. Many people were inspired by what they saw and heard there. They left with a new perspective of the Haitian community in The Bahamas. The documentary “Can You See Us?” which chronicles the struggles of young Haitian Bahamians and the discussion that followed the film were among the highlights of the night. The evening had a fiery ending as both the Bahamian and the Haitians gave performances specific to their cultures including a fire show. It united the beauty of the two cultures and brought people together. You can read more about the event in an article in The Eleutheran newspaper here.
For several weeks, the DCMS grade 9 students have been studying youth activism. Our class brings students, teachers, and community members together to create a vision for a more positive world. In the first two weeks, we learned about young activists all over the world and throughout history, brainstormed social and environmental issues in The Bahamas that we want to solve, and went out into our community and interviewed leaders. Then, each of us chose an issue that matters to us. We all made surveys, gathering information for our research. After collecting data, we wrote letters to the editors of different Bahamian newspapers! Now, we’re writing up our project proposals on Facebook. Please read about them and then VOTE for the projects you want to see happen!
At Deep Creek Middle School, the eighth graders and their Island School buddies have been working on the issue dengue fever. The class has divided into many smaller groups to work on projects such as the radio group, print media, standing water, and the community presentation group. Continue reading →