Education

SLO first-graders’ field trip offers lessons in math, philanthropy

How first-graders shop for groceries

Students from C.L. Smith Elementary School in San Luis Obispo shop for food at Grocery Outlet Bargain Market to donate to the Food Bank Coalition of San Luis Obispo County.
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Students from C.L. Smith Elementary School in San Luis Obispo shop for food at Grocery Outlet Bargain Market to donate to the Food Bank Coalition of San Luis Obispo County.

First-graders at C.L. Smith Elementary School took their learning outside of the classroom Friday when they headed to Grocery Outlet Bargain Market and purchased items to donate to the Food Bank Coalition of San Luis Obispo County.

The store donated gift cards for the students to shop for the local food bank.

Before the shopping excursion, the two classes of first-graders were given a list of recommended donation items and their prices. Each class was divided into groups of three.

The kids then worked within their groups to figure out how they wanted to spend their funds — each group was given a $25 gift card.

The students walked to the San Luis Obispo store, where they picked out and purchased the items on their shopping lists. They were then met by a food bank representative, who spoke about the local organization.

“At C.L. Smith, kindness is one of our four school rules, and it’s very important,” said Krista Maechler, a first-grade teacher. “I think this is a great way for our kids to not only learn about buying and goods and services, but also to learn to help other people.”

Maechler’s class of 25 students had their field trip in the morning. Kelly Hughes’ class of 20 first-graders visited the grocery store in the afternoon.

“We think it’s important that they understand how they are helping the community and that it’s important to give back,” said Shannon Parrish, who owns the San Luis Obispo store with her husband, Ryan. Parrish’s children attend C.L. Smith Elementary.

Danielle Ames: 805-781-7902

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