On April 23, a group of IXLers went back to high school for the day! We helped students at East Palo Alto Academy clean up their campus and prepare for a big school project. East Palo Alto Academy is a small public charter high school that strives to prepare students for college and the 21st-century workplace.
East Palo Alto Academy does an excellent job of serving an underprivileged community. It offers a lot of support for its students, including a four-year advisory program and mental health counseling, and it has impressively high graduation and college acceptance rates for the area.
The volunteer day was divided into two parts. We spent the morning washing windows and walls and picking up trash around the school. We needed to make sure those windows were squeaky clean, since students will soon be using them to display where they’ll be going to college!
At noon, we took a quick break to enjoy a delicious BBQ lunch, courtesy of the school. Once replenished, we paired up with sophomore students to help them with an end-of-year humanities project about genocide. The sophomores had been working on this project for months and were just a few days away from giving their final PowerPoint presentations to a panel of teacher and community judges. We helped them edit their slides, think through their arguments, and refine their presentations—and we learned a lot ourselves in the process! Overall, the students were all very nice and thankful, and we really enjoyed our time at the school.
To learn more about East Palo Alto Academy, please visit http://www.epaahs.org/.
By Lara Hochstein, Senior Curriculum Designer (ELA)