Description of Program:
This Literacy & Ethics Project uses a children's picture book to promote literacy and character development using the Four-Way Test, and is provided to every 2nd grade student in Laramie County. Andy & Elmer's Apple Dumpling Adventure is the story of a young entrepreneur who starts an apple dumpling business. With the guidance of a mysterious voice, conveying the Four-Way Test, he turns his venture into a wonderful success and makes friends along the way. Rotarians read these books to second graders in local schools, follow a provided lesson plan to talk about words that might be unfamiliar to students, discuss how we determine what is right and wrong or why people serve in our communities, and then distribute paper-back activity books to each student for them to take home. The workbooks allow the students to revisit and engage with the story, and allow parents to discuss the themes of ethics and community service as well.
Need: The Laramie County School District 1 district goal is, "Students will achieve academic success, graduate from high school prepared for post-secondary education, be career ready, and be responsible citizens." Foundational to that goal are the needs of the children of Laramie County for literacy and ethics. The need for children to be literate is obvious, and reading to children and providing them with books that they can read is key. When tackling simple ethical dilemnas such as cheating or lying, or more complicated issues such as bullying or when to tell an adult, youth need the tools to make the right decisions. Children, like adults, are searching for direction to do the "right thing." Rotary is in the perfect position to help meet the existing literacy and ethics needs of students throughout Laramie County. Presenting "The Four-Way Test" can provide a powerful opportunities to positively influence the youth in our community in a non-partisan and non-sectarian way, while also supporting literacy.