From the first, students and staff at Arbor have always been part of making the campus work. Every day every student in the school has a job -- from taking out the trash to running an elaborate composting program that keeps all of our paper towels and weekly pizza boxes out of the solid waste stream and helps to create soil for our gardens; from cleaning the guinea pig cage to mucking out the pygmy goat pen; from reorganizing classroom bookshelves to checking out and shelving library books... the list goes on and on.
Once a week the older students take on one class period of service to the community. They may write letters of thanks to recent classroom helpers, prepare the food bank for a weekend backpack lunch program for children in other schools who are receiving free lunch at school but need it also on weekends. They may work in the Office helping to.prepare mailings or go to our Primary classrooms to read and listen to young readers.
This notion of tending to others beyond oneself is deeply embedded in many ways throughout the school. It is so central that it was the a subject of a recent in-house publication produced and distributed by our Intermediate (4th & 5th grade) Letterpress Elective
What follows is a result of their reporting on jobs throughout the school:
Primary Jobs by Margaret
The Den thinks that the Guinea Pigs are the most important job because they are "alive animals," and Denner Charlie has made up a song about pencil sharpening. The Nesters use the saying, "Many hands make light work" to help them with their jobs.
Junior Jobs by Elliot
The Juniors rotate through their jobs with a chart. They have partners called mates who give tips to each other. Most kids like supervisor, because the supervisor picks the words for the hangman game at the end of the day.
Intermediate Jobs by Lauren
The Intermediates now have four job crews with unique names like Environmental Enhancement, Intermediate Conservation Corps, Marc's Cleansers Incorporated, and Groundhog Cleaning Crew.
Senior Jobs by Henry
The Seniors have two sets of jobs: classroom cleaning and speciality jobs. Classroom jobs involve sweeping, trash, recycling and compost, and other domestic jobs within seminar groups. Speciality jobs assigned based on surveys include curbside trash bins, gardening, and chicken wrangling.
Community Service by Harry
In Sr. Community Service Greg says goat vaccination or building African drums from Arbor logs are the craziest jobs, but Nick says rafter work is.