Desert Sands's SHHS Be the Change

SHHS Be the Change

SHHS Be the Change
Posted on 05/19/2022
Be the Change logo

Shadow Hills High School’s Be The Change project is a great project that freshman honors students have completed for the past 6 years, and this year their teacher Mrs. Lew described it as one of the best. Mrs.Lew’s thoughts on this annual project were, “It brings with it a lot of pride not only in themselves, but they were very impressed with their peers' projects and the other students who came out to support them. Students love this project because it is designed 100% from beginning to end by the individual, I simply guide them with the how-to and how much requirements.  They have a choice in what they research and choose what to read to prepare for it.  They have a choice in how they choose to get their project shared within the school community, the Indio community, or even larger audiences (with precautions put in place).  I love the project because of the depth and rigor required to complete it;  students do not even realize the level of work required because they are entranced by their projects.  Aside from the numerous standards this project covers, my biggest  "Why"  is that I am helping them to get to those top-tier colleges should they choose to go.  If one looks at the resumes of students getting accepted into the UCLAs, Harvards, Yales, Stanfords, and more, they often have community-based projects that help to show another side of the student. Universities want to know where a student's passion lies and what they are willing to do to make a difference in their field aside from pure academics. I believe this starts freshman year and a small project like this can help students to understand what it will take to make their dreams come true at the next level of education.” 

Some topics students chose for their project ranged from mental health, diabetes, obesity, clean water, poverty, education, healthy eating habits, self-esteem, human trafficking, literacy, sports, and more. 

Some samples of projects described by Mrs. Lew were;

Gardening- two students focusing on mental health for teens, focused their research on how gardening can help with stress, anxiety, and depression. When they presented at the SHHS Be the Change fair, they brought tools for kids to plant seeds and create something that they could take care of and watch grow. They then followed up with those students to check on their plants' growth and to see if there was an impact on the gardener.

Self esteem- A student focusing on self-esteem created a presentation from her research with positives to help students achieve their goals and presented it to four classes at our neighboring middle school.  

Abuse- One young lady collected diapers (mostly from teachers of little ones) for Shelter from the Storm. 

Social media- There was only one student who took on the negative effects of social media, but his project was welcomed by his peers and many signed his pledge to commit to limiting their daily time spent on social media.

Mrs. Lew gives a big thank you to DSUSD board members Linda Porras and Wendy Jonathan for attending the Be the Change Fair. And we at DSUSD give a big thank you to not only Mrs. Lew, but all the students involved in this project! You are not only helping your future selves, but the community as well.


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