Students take social action - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Students take social action

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SAUK CITY (WKOW)-- For the last three weeks, Sauk City 8th graders focused on social action, selecting a topic and convincing their peers and community why their issue deserves attention.

“This whole unit was mostly persuasion, cause that's what we're suppose to do,” said Diane Sullivan, an 8th grade English teacher. “It had researching, writing, citing sources.”

And the kids didn't just write papers. They took action. One group even held a book drive.

“We came up with the idea because we wanted kids to have the opportunity to be more advanced,” said Kursha Baier, an 8th grader.

Kursha and her group focused on child literacy, raising awareness about the importance of reading at home.

“We learned that about 53 percent of kids ages 3 to 5 aren't read to by a family member,” said 8th grader Mckenzie Pugh. “So we wanna spread the word that every child needs to read while they're growing up.”

Other groups worked with homeless, made blankets for animals at the humane society and volunteered at the Sauk food pantry.

“500-700 people a month go to the food pantry, just right here in Sauk,” said Rachel Barsness, an 8th grader.

Anna Block, one of Rachel’s group members, says they spent time working with those in need at the pantry.

“The biggest lesson I learned is that many families are struggling and that we just need to help out to help them get back on their feet,” Anna said.

The students showed off their work to teachers, parents and community members at a social action fair Wednesday night.

The project was more involved than a typical night of homework, but most of the 8th graders agree they got more out of it than just a letter grade.

“It didn't feel like homework because we were just helping out and it just felt good helping out, doing good deeds,” Anna said.

In all, the 8th graders completed about 80 social action projects and some of them will continue past this week's deadline.

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