Service Learning

Teachers use service learning to make abstract subjects real for students.

There are some issues that are difficult to address but important to learn about. Take poverty, for example – in 2011, just over one billion people lived in what the World Bank calls “extreme poverty”, surviving on less than US$1.25 a day.

A teaching method championed by the IB, service learning is formally recognized through Creativity, Activity, Service (CAS) activities but is encouraged as a teaching method in the Middle Years Program.

To assist students in completing their service learning project, teachers follow a five-stage process; investigating the issue, preparing for action, taking action, reflecting on what has been done and demonstrating what has been learned.

  • Finding a Real Need
    Service-learning experiences are most effective when students are working towards tackling an authentic need in the community.
  • Stop and reflect
    Documenting and reflecting on service performed is important, and teachers need to think about how to do this effectively.
  • Suitable for all ages
    Service learning shouldn’t be limited to older students.
  • Citizens of the future
    Although it may seem like a lot of time and effort, the benefits of service learning can be remarkable. It can help students better comprehend their learning.