A K–12 Service Learning Journal

Reflection is one of the four components of service learning. A K–12 service learning curriculum that spanned multiple needs and approaches to community problem solving could include an ongoing journaling component sustained from kindergarten through graduation. Reflections could be stimulated from a variety of perspectives, creating a record of contributions to local, national, and global needs throughout the entire K–12 education. Students could draw comparisons and discover overlaps, commonalities, and distinctions between the different areas of community service work in which they have engaged.

These journals would capture all service components in one document that students take with them upon graduation, providing evidence they were able to take actions that bettered their world. It would show that they always had a place in their communities, their country, and the world and that they took responsibility for something beyond themselves in partnership with their local, national, and global peers.

A K–12 journal becomes a piece of personal and community history, a history of growth in leadership, a history of progress in different areas of problem solving, a history that coincides with their nationwide graduating class, and a history that overlaps with their peers in surrounding grades. The journal is a way to remember and share stories and differences with future generations of youth who can see the foundation they laid or upon which they continue to build.

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