Community Service at Green Vale
Viewed as an essential tool for developing character, service learning is incorporated in many venues and projects at all grade levels. Community service and civic responsibility activities are integrated into the life of the school.
During the past academic year, Early Childhood children actively participated in Children Helping Children food and clothing drives as well as fundraising activities. Lower School students were involved in Jump Rope for Heart, a book buddy program with Early Childhood students, volunteer cooking for the homeless, and visiting the elderly at the Sun Harbor Nursing Home.
Environmental cleanups, participating in community mailings, manning booths at the Green Vale Fair, creating care packages for Long Island homeless agencies, gift giving to families and a community organization during the holidays, preparing lunches for the INN, and taking part in the Youth Services Opportunities Project were some of the activities that comprised the Upper School's 2,000 hours of community service in honor of the new millennium.
Service Learning is a teaching and learning methodology that connects meaningful community service experience with academic learning, personal growth, and civic responsibility. Service Learning empowers students as learners, teachers, achievers and leaders.
The Components of Service Learning are:
Preparation – students research the needs of the community with which they intend to be involved. They may do a needs assessment with specific individuals and formulate a plan in which they use their specific talents and skills to address these needs. They will develop the ability to plan and execute a plan using teamwork.
Action – students actively address the above needs of the community often working directly with those in need.
Reflection – students reflect on the experience, their successes, failures, what they accomplished and what they learned. Future possibilities may be explored. Methods of possible reflection include speaking, writing, or an artistic response.
Celebration – an integral of every Service Learning Project is the celebration held at the completion of the project. This may be simply a party, at best with those helped celebrating with the helpers. It may also be more extensive such as an assembly, or an award ceremony.