Service Learning and Food Security
· Analyze and identify community needs and community partner expectations.
· Reflect on the meaning of service and the relationship between self and community.
· Demonstrate professionalism, integrity, accountability and courtesy in the classroom and during the community engagement project.
· Synthesize knowledge of complex relationships underlying the larger community and its constituents.
· Acquire direct experience leading or being of service within the community.
· Critically examine personally held biases or assumptions regarding parts of the community with which the student was previously unfamiliar.
· Practice skills of communication within the context of service work.
During the ten hours in class, students explore the issues of food security through discussion, activities and reflection.
The discussions take place in class and online and are focused on an article that each student has read. Students are expected to summarize issues as well as form an opinion about the topic. The community partners come to class to share information about sustainability, hunger, and poverty in our community and how their agency responds to these issues. They bring current statistics and demographics for the county and the populations that they serve as well as how they serve. Students ask questions and have a conversation in class and then submit a written response the following week in class.
Class activities serve as a pre-service experience. In the quarter where we worked with the Food Connection on the Backpack Projects, students brought food items to donate to the backpack project. They combined what they brought with other donated items to fill bags that will be distributed to children through the BackPack project. At the end of the activity, students participate in a reflection activity. (A detailed description of this reflection activity is attached.)
Students spend some of their twenty service hours in direct service, either gleaning fruit or delivering, packing, or serving food. Students also spend some of their twenty hours of service completing a project for the community partner. Past projects have included:
- using Google Maps (Earth) to create an interactive map that individuals can use to find out where and when they can make a donation of fresh produce in Pierce County.
- creating a "How to run a food drive" webpage for the agency to post for organizations who want to run a food drive.
Some class reflections are about students personal experience, thoughts or feelings and are graded as a journal response. More specific criteria is applied to the reflections that are a response to an article or a speaker. Students are assessed on their writing, communication, as well as the ability to both summarize and evaluate content.
Students submit a contract and a log sheet for the twenty service hours.
This is a sample of an in class activity that is a mini-service project and reflection: InClass Work_Backpack Project (Microsoft Word 2007 (.docx) 16kB Nov19 12)