Spencer's first experience with Playworks was in the fall of 2012, when his senior class at the Friends School in Baltimore brought him to a volunteer training. His volunteer training showcased the Playworks core values, group management techniques, potential scenarios that are likely to take place at a partner school and of course, some fun games that promote cooperation and team building. Spencer's class then had five separate school visits to Hamilton Elementary/Middle School, located in northeast Baltimore, throughout the course of the winter and spring. During these visits he and his classmates observed and participated in multiple recess sessions with the students at Hamilton.
He built a rapport with multiple students, talking with them about what high school is like, and taking the initiative to teach some of the older students how to throw a frisbee and play Ultimate Frisbee. It was through these games and conversations that Spencer developed a passion for Playworks and the students at Hamilton.
Spencer demonstrated his commitment to improving the lives of Baltimore children when he decided to return to Hamilton for his senior internship. He spent every school day in May shadowing and supporting the Playworks Program Coordinator, Coach Walter Slowe, in the recess yard and in the classroom, working with over 700 students. Throughout his time at Hamilton he created strong relationships with students and teachers. He taught students new games and also brought a fun, carefree and creative style to the recess yard. Logging more than 180 hours in the month of May alone, Spencer made quite the impact on the attitudes and learning experiences for the youth at Hamilton Elementary/Middle School.