Sir William Marshal, (1144-1219), who served as Marshal to four kings, Regent of England, and a Templar Knight, was considered to be the greatest knight who ever lived. In transmitting the secret of his profound success, he was quoted as saying, "A knight with no one to serve is no knight at all."
Sir William embodied the spirit of all valiant knights who made their place in the world by using their unique abilities to serve others. In fact, the term, "knight," comes from the Old English word, "cniht," which means "servant." That noble quality of service-above-self has transcended the ages as the single distinguishing quality of those who have made the most significant contributions in the world. Giving all young people, therefore, the chance to dream, and freedom to serve is the reason the Early Act First Knight’s Program exists.
The Early Act First Knight program is a partnership between local Rotary clubs, Knights of the Guild, and educators, which combines effective character education with practical service projects. It was conceived as a new academic approach to character education. Early Act First Knight teaches what “service above self” is, why, how and when to act in order to make a positive difference in their world.
About every four weeks, teachers choose one student from their classroom who has earned the distinction of being awarded a medal and certificate for best exhibiting the virtue just studied. An assembly program is held where students are “knighted” by a knight in full armor. It is a surprise to the student who is receiving a medal. Family members are invited to attend this special ceremony.
Created by Knights of the Guild and Rotarians of District 5840, Early Act First Knight was conceived as a new approach to character education. Elementary students will be taught why it is important to serve others while offering them practical avenues of application in their community.
For more information, please visit www.eafk.org.