Service Learning Project Preparation Curriculum
Chicago Public Schools recognizes Service Learning as a powerful teaching
and learning methodology. When tied to classroom curriculum, Service Learning
can deliver important education and social outcomes. In order for students
to experience the full power and impact of Service Learning, however,
it is important that they are well prepared for the service experience.
Preparation enables students to connect academics to experience. It also
enables them to formulate and explore important questions pertaining to
the service project. By formulating questions prior to the service project,
service and learning goals are more clearly articulated and students can
have a richer experience.
The Service Learning Initiative of Chicago Public Schools has identified
and developed five strands of project preparation curriculum:
Aging, Hunger and Poverty,
Housing and Homelessness, Election Year Service Learning, Martin Luther King,
Jr. and Cesar Chavez.
We have chosen these strands because many students have had experiences
performing service at organizations that support those initiatives. Each
curriculum guide is designed as a resource for teachers to prepare students
for a service project. Activities designed to examine the issues are included.
We expect that teachers will take what is useful and employ it in the
classroom. The intent of the curriculum is to encourage inquiry-based
teaching strategies as a means for students to acquire the knowledge that
will make the service experience more meaningful.
The following teachers have participated in this curriculum development
Hubbard High School
Niles North High School
Schurz High School
Kelly High School
Chicago Public Schools
Office of External Affairs
The following organizations have contributed resources and expertise to the
curriculum development project. Other resources are noted in the curriculum.
Les Brown and Julie Dworkin
Chicago Coalition for the Homeless
Chicago Department on Aging
Greater Chicago Food Depository
Any questions about this curriculum can be directed to Jon Schmidt, Service
Learning Manager, at 773/553-3425 or jjschmidt@cps.K12.il.us.