Integrated Curriculum and Service Learning: A Platform for Social Transformation

Sharon L. Buda

Abstract


In this article, integrated curriculum practices combined with service-learning pedagogy is examined. The goal of these teaching practices is to empower students and to provide a platform for social transformation. A brief overview of the following theoretical frameworks is presented: integrated curriculum, service learning pedagogy, learning communities, and authentic instruction. An integrated pedagogical model is then illustrated through a case study of a suburban elementary school. Three community-based projects developed collaboratively with students, parents, teachers, and community members are described. The purpose of the case study and the school community’s involvement in the projects was to examine if the outcome included the creation of authentic products as well as schoolcommunity transformation. Additionally, an examination of student participation in the projects was undertaken to assess how project involvement may have contributed to the development of life-long learners and to the acquisition of creative, critical thinking and communication skills.

Keywords


integrated curriculum; Service-Learning; Learning Communities; Collaboration; Arts- Based; Authentic Products

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