Preparing Boys for Life

Lower School

It is very special because we are helping a lot of people.– Kyle, Second Grade

In the Lower School, service learning projects are directed by faculty members as part of the curriculum. The goal of the program is to expose students to a wide variety of projects and to build a sense of connectedness and responsibility to the greater community. Explore the sections below for a sampling of the experiences our Lower Schoolers engage in and reflect upon.

Walk for Water: Second grade service project


Through a year-long partnership with the Life Centers of Delaware County, our youngest students write “thinking of you” notes, participate in assemblies on topics of homelessness and poverty, collect clothing, food, books, and toiletries, and make boxed lunches.


Led by Upper Schoolers, our Elderly Empathy Workshop helps boys experience and better understand physical challenges faced by elderly individuals, including difficulty reaching items, seeing, and hearing. Then, our kindergartners visit a local assisted living center to engage with the residents through songs and activities. They engage in self-reflection following the project.

First grade

The first grade is closely connected with a school in Belize and communicates with its students through letter writing and Skype conversations. The Haverford School’s annual Lower School “Turkey Bowl,” held just before Thanksgiving, is a family day of sporting events and carnival games hosted to raise money for the students’ school supplies.

Second grade

Walk for Water encourages second grade boys to experience the task of fetching clean drinking water and carrying it a distance to their homes. They walk 3 miles with gallons of water, cheered on by their pre-kindergarten buddies and the rest of the Lower School community.

The boys also work to raise money to help build wells in Africa, and take a trip to Fairmount Water Works to learn the importance of being careful stewards of our resources.

Third grade

Students host a toy sale to benefit children at a local homeless shelter, taking responsibility for setting up the store’s layout, pricing the items, and managing the registers and inventory. Select boys also participate in a day-long exchange with their pen pals at The Timothy School, which serves autistic children.

Fourth grade

The natural environment is the focus of fourth graders’ service project. Working with Terracycle, the boys collect and send juice pouches to the company to be “upcycled” into picnic tables, pencil cases, and other items.

Fifth grade

As the student leaders of our Lower School, fifth graders leverage lessons from their leadership and decision education classes to enhance the experience of their fellow students. They identify and complete specific “Needs Projects” focused on social, academic, and community interests. Past projects include Men of Math (helping second graders with complex concepts), Fifth Grade Handbook (helping fourth graders transition), and Art Caretakers (care and upkeep of art displays).

Third grade used toy sale at The Haverford School

Third graders host a toy sale to benefit children at a local homeless shelter.

The Haverford School Service Learning

Students make placemats for children at CHOP during the Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service.