The 2nd graders have been hard at work, participating in our annual Canine Companions for Independence service project. C.C.I. is an organziation that provides trained service dogs to people, including children, with varying needs. Every year the 2nd graders meet Carol Swain, a volunteer puppy raiser for C.C.I.. Carol introduces the children to the C.C.I. mission as well as the puppies that she trains. The children were thrilled to meet and greet both Ty and Pedro, Carol’s current puppies in training. In order to raise money for this organization, the children made pledges and participated in a read-a-thon, raising over $1000! With the money we raised, we purchased items from the C.C.I. wish list. As our culminating experience, the children brought the purchased items to the C.C.I. training center in Medford, Long Island. While there, the children toured the training facility and were able to meet other C.C.I. volunteers, employees and dogs in training. The children learn so much about themselves and the world when they are given the opportunity to think about and help others. This has certainly been an experience that the 2nd graders will always remember.