The Spirit of the Season Arrives at Healthy Starts CCLC at OHSU

The Giving Tree in the lobby at Healthy Starts CCLC was inspired by the children in the preschool two classroom.

The Giving Tree in the lobby at Healthy Starts CCLC was inspired by the children in the preschool two classroom.

At Healthy Starts CCLC at Oregon Health & Science University in Portland, Oregon, there have been many classroom discussions about the unique ways we celebrate different holidays at this time of year. As they talked, children and teachers began to see a theme: all holidays celebrate things in common, including light, food, and giving to others.

The Preschool Two classroom wanted to explore further. Parents helped, bringing in different foods and traditional items to share with the class, but the children remained curious about the idea of giving to others.

Teachers Nani and Lacey read The Giving Book and The Giving Box with the class to help answer the children’s questions. The books asked the children to think about how they wanted to help and gave them ideas on how they could achieve their goals.

After voting on the decorative details, children made a Giving Box to be filled with donated toys.

After voting on the decorative details, children made a Giving Box to be filled with donated toys.

The children decided to create a classroom Giving Box. They voted on how to decorate it and what things to put inside. Their blue, glittered, creation is being filled with toys they have brought from home and have outgrown. The toys will to be donated to children who have none.

Center staff was so moved by the preschooler’s selflessness that they began a food drive and put a Giving Tree in the lobby so that everyone could join in! The items under the lobby Giving Tree willb e given to the children at nearby Doernbecher Children’s Hospital and will be delivered on Monday the 23rd.

“I am so thankful to call Healthy Starts Children’s Center my home and privileged to work with these teachers [who] pour themselves into their children every day,” said Allyse Paetsch, Program Specialist. “It is truly evident how much care and knowledge they bring to their profession and I couldn’t be more proud of them.”

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