For students and families at The Wood Acres School, service learning is woven into the fiber of our school and our students. Service learning is:
- Contextual- learning that relates subject matter content to real world situations, allowing students to make connections between knowledge and its applications
- Experiential- learning through the experience of doing
- Applied- learning emphasizing the relevance of what is being learned in the “real world”
- Cross-disciplinary learning (math, science, history, literature, etc.) giving students the opportunity to make real connections.
Service learning is meaningful to the student and the community. Students are active and engaged participants in the learning process. Finally, as much of the learning experience comes from the doing as it does from reflection. That makes service learning very powerful!
The Wood Acres School plans and coordinates service learning to be a natural extension of our daily teaching, learning, and caring. Projects include walk-a-thon and bike-a thons for Smile Train, UNICEF projects, Cool Girls clothing and accessory drive, MUST Ministry sandwich cross-grade project, canned food drives, clothing drives, Armed forces survival cord bracelet projects, place mat project for area elderly, clothing drive for Cobb Foster Program, Mittens for Moms drive, animal shelter projects, letter writing and cards, art for others, and many more mini happenings throughout each school year.
Service learning is further reinforced on our very campus. From the youngest students making certain the sandbox is ready for the next class to regional and global projects through the Upper School Beta Club Wood Acres actively involves students in their classes, campus, and school. A beloved Wood Acres tradition has Early School classes paired with Grammar and Upper School classes for wonderful projects and activities throughout the school year. From story times, together snack times, and even campus beautification projects students see their school community in action.
Overarching our choice of service learning projects are the following beliefs:
- Projects are positive, meaningful, real, and age appropriate for students
- Events are cooperative rather than competitive experiences
- Participation gives students insight into complex life problems yet gives them a feeling of doing something about it.
- School projects are well developed and offer students time to process what they did and to feel good about it, too.
- Service learning done frequently and consistently over the years at Wood Acres builds character, compassion, and humanity from within and lets it shine from the inside out.