My professional platform is a teaching and learning method: Service-Learning (SL). SL is a process where students learn and develop through active participation in the learning process. This teaching style provides meaningful community service activities that relate to academic subject content that students are learning in the classroom.
The distinction between community service and service learning can be described as: providing direct service to address an immediate need of the community, by serving food at a homeless shelter once a week and service-learning, serving food at a homeless shelter once a week and advocating with homeless families for the creation of more transitional housing and social service programs that ties to identifying a social problem and developing practical solutions. In addition service learning has a reflection component that students (and the community) to complete as it relates to the theories they learn in class. The reflection process allows the students to process whether their learned theory supports or negates what they accomplished through practice.
I chose Service-Learning as my professional platform because I feel strongly that students need to be reengaged in the learning process. Amdist the standards movement and the consistently changing “education movement” the foundation of learning and developing both cognitive and social skills to be active citizens has been lost. Reengaging students in the joy of learning and grasping knowledge that can empower them to change their immediate surroundings is crucial if we are to become a globally competitive country.
Here’s what I do know: incorporating the teaching and learning method of service-learning into the K-12 education curriculum, as it is already being used in multiple higher-education disciplines, would only benefit our students learning and expose them to non-traditional means of learning through service.