Knowing about the larger world is not enough. Helping care for it—and change it for the better—is an essential part of the Nightingale education.
Nightingale looks at community engagement from both a local and global perspective, and by focusing less on raising money and more on raising awareness, our aim is to engage students in causes for which they can do actual service not only during their time at Nightingale but for a lifetime.
From their first days here, our girls engage their city and learn to give back. Students might serve lunch at the All Souls Friday Soup Kitchen, tutor children at the East Harlem Tutorial Program, or raise awareness about a cause for which they are passionate. Projects throughout the school are built into the curriculum and underscore the link between classroom learning and real world issues. For example, through Nightingale’s partnership with the Manhattan Children’s Center on the Upper West Side, all fifth-grade students work with autistic and other special needs children, teaching them about socializing, friendship, and communication, while developing their own senses of empathy, compassion, and respect at the same time.In Class VII, all students participate in the Sweet Readers program, through which they engage with adults (“elders”) who have Alzheimer’s Disease, exploring and creating poetry and art with them and aiming to discover the person behind the disease. For this project, students are also paired with seventh graders from the Young Women’s Leadership School of East Harlem, a public all-girls school.The goal of all of these programs is to instill a lifelong commitment to service and civic responsibility.
Click here to view a short video focused on the work Class VII does with the Sweet Readers program.