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Teaching Kids About Helping Others

A group of teachers in Hamilton County, Tenn., are spending some of their summer vacation doing community service as part of a state Service Learning certification program, according to WRCB TV Channel 3. The Chattanooga news station says the program gives teachers classroom and curriculum training on how to "teach their students about the importance and rewards of helping others," all while getting their hands dirty as they clean up after animals at the humane society or volunteer at the food bank.

Delray Zimmerman, the communications director of Volunteer Tennessee, which oversees the program, told the station that students "improve their grades," are "less likely to miss school," and "feel more connected to their community" when they become involved in community service projects.

According to the station, special education teacher Grace Monk hopes to take what she learns from her community service experience to give her students a self-esteem booster. "This might be a way for them to feel that they have something to offer, and what a powerful feeling that is for them," said Monk.

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