The ACPS district-wide CivicTREK teacher cohort met together for a third professional development session on December 1. Most participants have begun the development of their service-learning process, even as some plan to introduce the project with their students in the spring semester. We asked our teachers to identify, “in 6 words or less”, a challenge they are facing in their service-learning work; their responses included:
- “Big ideas into feasible steps!”
- “Finding time and an engaging hook”
- “Community building without community presence”
- “Don’t procrastinate yet – embed into curriculum!”
During this session, teachers examined a word cloud developed from a compilation of the academic content standards that each teacher intends to incorporate into the service-learning project. Teachers noted the overlap between the standards and the key components of project-based service-learning.
Teachers were asked to identify which of the Profile of a Virginia Graduate Five C’s they think is the most important for students, and how it helps them accomplish academic goals. . .
. . . and then reflected on how the Five C’s relate to social-emotional skill development, as outlined in the CASEL core concepts.
Teachers worked in pairs to envision the May CivicTREK showcase and their hopes for their students. They collaborated with another participant to backward-plan a timeline of project steps and milestones in their classrooms before the event. As they reflected on the session, teachers noted the value of the opportunity to exchange resources, ideas, and inspiration with colleagues.
The next professional development workshop is scheduled for January 20th, 2022, and will focus on the next steps of the service-learning framework and assessing student outcomes.