During a class field trip to the Capitol Region Visitor Center in Montpelier, Vermont, second graders discovered that there was no tourist information specifically for children. When they returned to school, the students talked with their teacher about doing something to help visitors find about the fun things for children and families to do in Montpelier. The students then checked with the Capitol Region Visitor Center to make sure having resources oriented toward children would be helpful. The students decided, as a service-learning project, to work with the Capitol Region Visitor Center, the Vermont Department of Tourism and local libraries to create a Kid’s Guide to Montpelier.
For the guide, the students decided to make posters of local attractions and activities and assemble them into a book. The class surveyed students at their school and made several field trips to local attractions to help determine which should be included in the guide. Getting help from their peers, the students wrote the content and drew the pictures for the posters. The students also designed a front cover and wrote an introduction page. Once they had created all the pieces, they took their work to a local print shop that copied and bound the guide.
Students then presented their guide to the Capitol Region Visitor Center and local libraries for tourist use. The students’ guide is extremely popular and helpful to visitors to the Center. According to the Center’s director, “The students worked on the idea for months and came up with a selection of attractions that they illustrated with crayons. It is colorful, informative, and very well written. Tourists have been looking through the pages and commenting on how useful it is.”