If you plan on working with another organization, be sure to check their minimum age requirements to make sure your kindergarteners can participate.
1. Gift of color.
Color sheets are popular with young children. For the “learning” element, discuss the people who will receive the color sheets. Explain why someone would like one of their sheets. Some children might have problems giving away all of their sheets, so include one that they can take with them. Programs that benefit from colored sheets include:
- Meals on Wheels (used as placemats)
- Local churches
Explore which local organizations will distribute your color sheets.
2. Crayons and sheets.
An alternative to providing already colored sheets is to provide sheets and crayons for others to color. The steps kindergarteners can do include collecting broken crayons and removing the paper. They can also recycle coloring books by pulling out the sheets that have not been colored in a book. Alternatively, they can pick out images online for printing. They can also deliver the recycled crayons and sheets to local doctor’s offices, shelters and other locations where children are likely to be with free time. The “learning” can include discussions on recycling and sharing. Start a collection of used crayons and coloring books for this step.
During the holiday season, there are a lot of collections that occur. Don’t stop because the season of giving is over. People need help year-round. Here are some items to collect to get you started.
- Non-perishable food items
- Gently used toys
- Coats, hats and mittens
- Gently used clothes
- Cancelled postage stamps
Find out who receives the items collected and share this with your girls so they can learn where the items go and how it benefits others. Start your own list of organizations and their needs to refer back to when you decide to do a collection service project.
4. Decorate cards.
Kindergarteners can decorate cards to send to soldiers, the elderly and others for more than the holidays. In addition, they can send blank cards to these same people for their use. Explore groups in your area that would accept this kind of a donation.
5. Litter collector.
Schools, parks and even your neighborhood may have garbage that needs to be collected. Be sure to provide each girl with gloves to protect them against any dirt or germs on the items they collect. For kindergarteners, usually one plastic shopping bag (the size you’d get at a store to take your groceries home) is what they can collect without feeling overwhelmed or trying to carry too much. Find one or more location where they can collect litter.
Let them get dirty! Ask your kindergarteners to plant flowers or vegetables on a small plot or in containers. Let them continue taking care of the plants or share them with others. The kids might also have fun helping an existing garden by pulling weeds, watering and learning about a community garden. See if there is a community garden where your kindergarteners can start working.
7. Support school programs.
Get your kindergarteners into the spirit of school by supporting programs they already have like recycling, collecting Box Tops or other things that anyone can do. They can see that one person might not be able to do much, but together they can accomplish almost anything. Be sure your kids know about the programs and the goals they are working toward.
Whether your kindergarteners like to sing, tell jokes or do skits, they can perform in a multitude of places. They can visit nursing homes, day care facilities, shelters, senior centers, etc. Find places where they can put on their own performances.
9. What else do you do?
Explore service projects done in your area that you think kindergarteners can handle. You may find that they can do more if they have proper instruction before the project starts.
Sites to Explore