The opportunity to reach beyond borders and become global citizens starts in the Lower School with daily foreign language classes offered for all grades.
Beginning in Senior Kindergarten, students have the option of taking Mandarin Chinese or Spanish. The goal is for students to learn to communicate in meaningful and appropriate ways in the chosen language. Instruction is highly interactive.
As early as Kindergarten, classroom activities, research and presentations introduce students to countries on other continents.
“Their presentations set the stage for our project to connect the students’ learning to a community-service project," said Hartman.
Lower School student council leaders fundraise to purchase school supplies later donated to children in countries visited by Parker Middle and Upper School students during Discovery Week and Global Studies trips.
Funds are collected through sales of hot chocolate and baked goods before School. Many students donate money they earn from doing extra chores at home by cleaning their rooms and putting away laundry to caring for pets and even contributing money they receive from the tooth fairy.
In the spring, they learn about the cheer they spread to children in places such as Peru, Colombia, Cambodia, China, India and the Philippines when the Middle and Upper School students visit the Mission Hills Campus to share stories and photos from their travels as Parker goodwill ambassadors.