PARAGOULD, AR (KAIT) - Thanksgiving is just a week away but a group of students from the Paragould School District are already in the giving mood.
Sixth grade students in the Advanced Learning Program at Oak Grove Middle School spent part of the day Thursday serving lunch at Mission Outreach.
"We go once a month to the Mission and serve lunch and clean," Program teacher Gina Starling said. "We clean the playground or clean, sweep and mop the dining area."
Starling told Region 8 News that she and a literature teacher at Oak Grove Middle School wanted to teach the students to give back to the community, especially this time of year.
"At Thanksgiving, we give and do turkey dinners and at Christmas we adopt families," Starling said.
However, the giving doesn't end there.
"What happens in February, March and April? People still need someone who's willing to step up and do and help," Starling said.
Starling said they have worked to teach the children that it's important to give year round. She said she can tell how much it's touched the kids in a positive way.
"They want to give back at the school too," Starling said. "They want to help cafeteria ladies and they want to serve at the Mission at night."
Starling said the important thing is to teach children to volunteer for things that do not involve money.
"As 12-year-olds, they can't drive to places. We're trying to teach them things they can do, kind things to make people feel better," Starling said.
ALP students also make generic birthday and Christmas cards to bring to people at Mission Outreach.
This is the third year ALP students have been involved in this sort of community service.
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