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Beautify the community: a K-Kids service idea

Let K-Kids lead the effort by designating a wall where they’ll work with fellow students and their teachers to create a mural. It’s a great way to create a lasting visual message of inclusion and acceptance.

How the mural is made
Each student is asked to help create the mural by drawing a self-portrait on a post-it note. Each student then adds his or her drawing to the mural.

If club members want the mural to be even more engaging, students can be encouraged to make a second post-it note and write something they could do to make others feel welcome and included during the year. Provide examples. (For instance: I’m going to smile, I’m going to listen, I’m going to invite someone I don’t know to sit with me at lunch.)

How to begin
Have the club decide which wall to use for this mural. Encourage them to find a prominent wall that everyone passes each day. For example, it may be near the cafeteria or the library. Have the club officers ask permission from the school principal to use the wall for a mural made from custodian-approved materials.

Materials
  • Butcher paper, or poster board to cover the wall. 
  • Painter’s tape to adhere the paper to the wall.
  • Post-it notes in all colors to post on the butcher paper.
  • Colorful Sharpie markers to write and draw on the post-it notes.
  • Two baskets: one for the markers and one for the post-it notes.
  • One large poster board where instructions will be displayed. 
  • One long rectangular table to display the poster while it’s being made, and to hold the baskets of markers and post-it notes. Remember to cover the table with butcher paper to protect it from the markers.

Theme
Will the mural have a slogan or theme? Will club members write the slogan or theme at the top with marker, or will it be spelled out with post it notes in big colorful squares? Mural themes should focus on making all people in the school feel welcome. Guide the members as they brainstorm ideas.

How to set up
  • Adhere the butcher paper to the length of the wall with tape.
  • Display the mural theme that members have agreed to use.
  • For people posting post-it note art on the mural, write instructions on the poster board and place it near the table.
  • Cover the table with paper or poster and place the baskets with post-it notes and markers on the table.
  • Let K-Kids start the process so they can lead by example—drawing their contributions to the mural first.

Watching the mural grow
The club can watch as the mural begins to grow. Soon the entire wall will be filled with wonderful drawings of students and happy messages. When the mural is complete, have club members take photos and share this work of art in the school newsletter. And encourage club members to ask the principal whether they can take some time during daily announcements to share things written on the post-it notes.

And when they do, remember: They can invite all students to participate in K-Kids service projects and even become members.
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