Service learning in the curriculum
For Clean Up Australia Day, a teacher at a local school decides that students will clean up part of the banks of the Brisbane River. This is one example of a service learning program.
The Australian Curriculum
There are many opportunities to link LEA’s service learning initiative to the Australian Curriculum. First, we must remember that the notion of service learning in Lutheran schools is two-fold; first service is ‘personal response to God’s love’ and second, ‘a broader response as part of one’s humanity for the sake of justice for all.’ Service learning in Lutheran Schools, 2010.
A summary of St Andrews Lutheran College religion and ethics program
An example of St Andrews Lutheran College assessment item
This unit explores the way we treat people within our families and how that can determine how we treat people outside of our families. Students are encouraged to identify the roles of those in their family including the work, home chores and recreational activities of each. Scripture passages are also provided.
Everyday students can make a difference to the lives of the people that make up their whole school community. In this activity students are able to think of ways they can help others in the school.
As part of the school’s mission, the idea of ‘peace’ and developing ‘intercultural understandings’ is at the heart of the community. With this in mind the school has embarked on establishing a partnership with the Islamic College of South Australia (Adelaide). This ‘snapshot’ shares the planning and preparation that has gone into starting this partnership.
The elective program for the Middle School at St Andrews runs every semester. It is a vertical program and students get to choose three electives a semester. The teachers from the two electives decided to plan, teach, implement and assess their units together. ‘Not Just Skin Deep’ (girls elective) and ‘Bronzed Aussie’ (boys elective) focuses on how students’ can live an active and healthy lifestyle while making well informed decisions about their well-being.
This document does not go into too much detail on buddies programs or service learning but rather is designed to bring the two concepts together in order to enhance them and prime students for bigger and better things as they progress through secondary school.
Friendly neighbours can make a big difference to the lives of people who live in them. There are times when we need the support of those people who live closest to us. During this unit students will realise that they can make a difference to their local community by choosing to build helpful and supportive relationships.
At Tarrington Lutheran School, students are called to serve on a daily basis. Not only are children encouraged to serve each other in the way they interact with each other but they are also immersed in serving others in a much wider context.
At the start of the year, Faith run house camps in the Senior School (vertical Year 10-12). A Head of House decided to plan a service learning camp. The following ‘Snapshot’ shares the process of the preparation, implementation and reflection involved with the camp. Throughout the camp it was made known to the students explicitly what phase of the service learning process they were experiencing and the purpose behind it.
Service activities play an important part of the culture at Luther. Michael Kleidon, the college’s principal, says that involving students in service activities provides opportunities for them to share Christ’s love.
The Partnership between LORDS and the local TriCare Aged Care Facility at Pimpama aims to build cross-generational relationships between the aged residents in residential care and Year 11 students. Cross-generational buddying provided young people with skills to build cross-generational friendships and better understand the joys and challenges of living through different eras in time. For the aged, buddy-visits provided sustained relationships and interests that contributed to observable improvements in health and well-being.
St Marks has a Social Justice Policy which underpins and gives focus to the values, learning and action that takes place in the community. This ‘snapshot’ shares how the policy ‘lives’ in the school community (locally, nationally and globally).
When establishing partnerships it is important that students and communities understand the issues relating to poverty, cultural issues and sustainable development. ALWS Awareness Day and associate resources allow schools to explore these issues.
We would love to publish a snapshot of service learning at your school. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org