When we chose the original building for Project Learn School, we committed ourselves to our neighborhood. Our students feel part of this neighborhood, and understand that we both benefit from and give back to the communities in which we live.
Community Service Projects
Service activities help our children develop their sense of responsibility to and membership in the community. Local projects have included working with naturalists to clean up the Wissahickon Valley Park, baking food for the local community food banks, and collecting clothing, food and toys for the Kensington Welfare Rights Union. Our service extends globally as well. Each spring our graduating class participates in a service learning trip to Costa Rica. Ultimately it is our goal to teach children to be responsible and ethical community members of our world.
PLS takes pride in our strong visual arts program. During the last several years our students’ work has been exhibited at several outside locations, which include Infusion Coffee and Tea and Woodmere Art Museum. Other exhibits have included:
Fire Station Mural
During a meeting with local firefighters, PLS students were inspired by their stories and words and decided to make something to give to them. “Trust, brotherhood, pride, friendship, neighborhood, like a ballet” were ideas that led to a collaborative design of a 4’ x 3’ mural that now hangs in our local fire house.
In Spring 2015, PLS and Arcadia University students collaborated to bring to life an exhibit for Awbury Arboretum. Art students at Arcadia created narratives about imaginary creatures after visiting the Arboretum’s Secret Garden. They gave those stories to PLS students who made sculptures that brought these creatures to life. Artists Carole Loeffler, Associate Professor of Art and Joan Fox, art teacher at PLS, facilitated this project.
For the past 20 years, Project Learn has participated in Kids Care, an art show and gift-giving project for children at St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children. This is a joint project hosted by Woodmere Art Museum, WXPN’s Kids’ Corner and various public and independent schools from the Philadelphia area. It is important to note that in preparation for Kids Care, our whole school comes together to devote 2-3 days to this creative project.
For ten weeks, PLS students and senior residents of Germantown Home Senior Center paired together to create collages as part of a project entitled Collaged Landscapes. This program was sponsored by Germantown Senior Homes and The Center for Emerging Visual Artists and facilitated by graphic artist Jill Galloway Sherman.
Every other year PLS participates in an international poetry/art program called Dream Flags. Our students work with their teachers to write poems about their dreams and then work in groups to incorporate these poems onto decorated flags. The completed flags are displayed as part of the Dream Flag celebration held at the Constitution Center in downtown Philadelphia.