So your child is volunteering for a physical therapist? Great! But how do you count it for school? Today, HSLDA President Mike Smith and this week’s guest Billie Jo Youmans talk about service learning—and its educational value—on Home School Heartbeat.
Billie Jo, we’ve been talking about service learning or volunteering as part of curriculum. How can parents help their children derive education benefit from these opportunities?
Billie Jo Youmans:
It is important to be purposeful in goal setting. Service learning should be approached as a project with well-defined plans, including a time frame, established goals, and measurable objectives, such as what knowledge and skills will be learned and what work habits developed.
Keep your plans in mind as the project proceeds, and assess progress. Include spiritual education and goals. Be sure students know serving others is not the work God calls us to do—the work He calls us to is to trust Jesus to use our work choices for the good of all.
But is this is part of a curriculum? How can parents document the service learning for actual school credit?
Service learning can definitely be part of a curriculum. The research and planning process, the application, interviews, training, the hours of direct service, the supplementary student research and reports, as well as volunteer evaluations are all documentation. The HSLDA website gives solid information on calculating credit hours and incorporating them in transcripts. Service learning is a curriculum that effectively grows hearts and minds.
Billie Jo, thanks for your thought-provoking comments. And until next time, I’m Mike Smith.