Service learning weaves classroom learning with real community needs. Working with adults as partners, students must identify challenges, research the issues, identify and create strategies, facilitate action, and infuse reflection throughout activities. Some service learning programs position students in each strategy to enhance youth/adult partnerships through service. Others tie together youth throughout communities in order to build stronger connections, an ethic of service, and mutually beneficial relationships between youth and adults.
Youth voice is crucial to the overall effectiveness of service-learning programs. Youth voice has a tremendous impact on program participation and program outcomes, both short term and long term. — Education Commission of the States
- “Youth-Led Community Building: Promising Practices from Two Communities Using Community-Based Service-Learning” by Linda Camino for Journal of Extension
- “What is Service Learning?” by State Farm Youth Advisory Board
- “How to foster youth-led service learning” by the Arlington Partnership for Children, Youth and Families
Other tools are out there, too – share your thoughts in the comments below! For more information about how The Freechild Project can support youth engagement in service learning in your community or organization, contact us.