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The Generator is NYLC's quarterly publication exploring service-learning practice featuring research, practical ideas, and profiles of service-learning in action.
Click here to subscribe to The Generator newsletter list for automatic notification when new issues are published. We do not currently offer a printed edition of The Generator.
This issue of The Generator looks at the connection between service-learning and 21st century skills, and how they play out in classrooms and school districts. We profile three schools doing projects that tie modern issues such as freshwater food chains, emergency response, and cultural history lessons, all in the context of hands-on, student-led learning.
With this issue of The Generator we explore the expanding role of technology in the classroom and how it can improve service-learning work. Read about how the school-age students in Generation Z see and use technology in their lives and how that changes their approach to learning. Get a list of online resources that can enhance your classroom work and student engagement.
Service-learning in STEM education
With this issue of The Generator we explore service-learning's role in improving STEM education and student's connection to real-world learning. Read about the national push for improved STEM education programs, and how service-learning has a track record in engaging students in both science and math. Learn about how a St. Paul, MN school has integrated service-learining into the fabric of their programming as an aerospace magnet, and how their involvement in the Generator Go Green initiative helped their students dig into new studies around water quality.
Evaluate the Experience, Demonstrate New Understanding
With this issue of The Generator we explore the last two steps of the service-learning cycle, “evaluate the experience” and “demonstrate new understanding.” Learn how purposeful implementation of critical inquiry can spur deeper engagement in service-learning projects. Read how a Brooklyn, N.Y. elementary school uses reflection as a key part of the service-learning experience, and how a Mounds View, Minn. elementary school practices backward design in their service-learning as a way to reach state standards and increase instructional rigor.
Conduct Meaningful Service
In this issue of The Generator we explore “Conduct meaningful service,” the sixth step of the service-learning cycle. Learn how one southwestern Kentucky middle school was able to increase summer camp attendance and academic interest by engaging students in hands-on STEM projects. Also read how students in central Michigan are creating teen driver safety changes by rallying support for the Graduated Drivers Licensing Law and educating their peers on what these stronger restrictions mean.
Plan and Prepare
With this issue of The Generator we explore “plan and prepare,” the fifth step of the service-learning cycle. Read how planning assessments that demonstrate achievement of learning objectives can be integrated into the cycle, and view a sample unit plan that uses this Understanding by Design approach. Experience a New Orleans elementary school’s exhilaration as they create a community garden to address local fresh food needs with help from their partners and ultimately garden with Louisiana First Lady Jindal.
With this issue of The Generator we explore “developing ownership,” an essential part of the service-learning cycle. Read about its relevance both to youth voice and partnerships, two of the K-12 Service-Learning Standards for Quality Practice. Discover how Chicago elementary students are inspiring recycling and energy use behavior changes in adults and students alike, and how a Minneapolis student-run newspaper brings insight to the achievement gap. Explore opportunities for fostering student ownership in a service-learning experience through formative assessment.
Establish Evidence of Learning
This issue of The Generator asserts the importance of “learning” in service-learning as we explore the third step of the service-learning cycle, establishing evidence of learning. To create academically rigorous service-learning experiences, NYLC has brought in Grant Wiggins and Jay McTighe’s “backwards design” approach. Jon Schmidt shares the successful citywide approach to service-learning in Chicago. St.