Best Practices

Service Learning

At Ellis, students are not required to go out and do good in the world. We don’t keep track of hours or hand out grades for public service. And yet, the spirit of giving back is welcomed wholeheartedly, and every student is involved in service activities each year.

This is because Ellis instills in students a sense of responsibility to the larger community. We call this service learning, and it connects our classroom curriculum to opportunities for involvement with service agencies and initiatives across the region and around the world.

The world beyond the classroom serves as an invaluable learning space where students extend and apply their knowledge. This is how good students become great citizens.

Service Learning opportunities

List of 4 items.

  • Fighting Hunger

    Each year Lower School students learn about food insecurity in our region by participating in special service learning projects for the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank. Students in first grade join the fight by raising money for the Kids Campaign to End Hunger. And fourth graders assemble festive gift bags with cake mix, frosting, party favors, and more, for families who need help affording a birthday party for child.
  • Earth Cream Sale

    Every Earth Day, April 22, fourth grade students host a school-wide fundraiser by selling ice cream on campus. Proceeds from the Earth Cream sale benefit the Frick Park Environmental Center, a frequent trip where students in all divisions study native habitats.
  • Guild

    Guild is a student-run organization which acts as both a facilitator and an organizer, providing varied opportunities for group and individual student service-learning experiences, and also organizing larger group-oriented activities.
  • Mitten Tree

    Each December students in third grade start the winter season by inviting the Ellis community to decorate their Mitten Tree. Once the tree is full of warm winter mittens, hats, and scarves the students decorate the boxes used to deliver the items to local families in need.