Learning in the MYP

What is Community and Service in the MYP at TIS?

Community and Service (C&S) or Service Learning is an integral part of the IB and the MYP curriculum and “MYP schools are responsible for planning opportunities for students’ involvement in service with the community.” (MYP: From Principles into Practice) Students are expected to develop skills in collaboration, perseverance, global engagement, and intercultural understanding.
This is a high expectation placed on middle school students, but as we have recently witnessed, many of our students are rising to the challenge. However, there is still more to do. Taking action can be difficult for some students and just as we have differentiated learning in academic classes, we differentiate in C&S. We are using a point system to help students meet their own learning goals. This system also helps students and teachers keep track of achievement within the school.

Last year C&S projects were decided by the school for example, the grade sixes made rice balls for distribution to homeless people on Friday mornings. We are trying a new program this year, which allows students to have more ownership over their projects and become active in issues that truly matter to them. Some recent examples of student projects are the clothes drive for Syria, Steps for Syria, Toiletry Run, the used book swap for the library, the Scratch contest, helping a teacher out with an afterschool club, and reading to grade one students. Other students have joined existing service groups at school such as Kids4Kids or are doing various short time activities such as teaching computer skills to a teacher or making posters about the importance of hand washing. There are many opportunities for students in and outside of school.

How can parents help students achieve their C&S goals? First of all, listen to your child’s ideas and then help them in creating a realistic and doable project. Secondly, remind them that C&S is not limited to fund-raising. Students can help others by teaching someone or by making something; these projects are just as worthwhile as raising money. Finally, if you know of any projects or have ideas for our students, please contact me, the more people working together, the stronger our program.

Here is the Point Chart for your reference:

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Stacey Isomura
Community and Service Coordinator, MS Teacher