Through cooperation and engagement with the larger community, service-learning offers a valuable way to concurrently foster civic engagement and social responsibility through the process. Service learning combines service objectives with learning objectives with the intent that the activity benefits both the recipient and the provider of the service. This teaching and learning method upholds a commitment to appreciating the assets of and serving the needs of a community partner while enhancing student learning and sustainable practices through responsible action and intentional reflection. This is accomplished by combining service tasks with structured opportunities that link the task to self-reflection, self-discovery, and the acquisition and comprehension of values, skills, and knowledge content.
Because of its connection to content acquisition and student development, service-learning is often linked to school courses, and inspires these educational organizations to build strong partnerships with community-based organizations. Whatever the setting, the core element of service-learning is always the intent that both providers and recipients find the experience beneficial, even transformative.
National Commission on Service-learning states that service-learning links to academic content and standards; involves young people in helping to determine and meet real, defined community needs; it is reciprocal in nature, benefiting both the community and the service providers by combining a service experience with a learning experience; can be used in any subject area so long as it is appropriate to learning goal; works at all ages, even among young children.
Support in implementation of effective service-learning at CCS will be facilitated with the assistance of community organizations such as Earth Force. They help to facilitate community partnerships that foster students’ confidence in their abilities to be change agents in their communities.