Community Links

Description

Community links foster a wide variety of activities that involve members of the community as part of the learning experiences in a school and students as learners in partnership with the community. Community resources and expertise support learning, for both school and community. Community links can also encourage student volunteer activities in places such as senior citizens’ centres or day care facilities. Community links may be initiated by school personnel or community individuals or groups and may involve long-term associations between the school and community. They require knowledge of community organizations and clubs and their resources in order to develop mutually beneficial programs. Community involvement may also focus on project-based initiatives.

Method
The teacher:
  • identifies appropriate links between the school and community;
  • invites and co-plans with community representatives to participate in the school in meaningful ways;
  • prepares students as hosts or partners in the learning experience;
  • monitors the learning partnerships and adapts as needed;
  • seeks feedback from community partners, and gives feedback to them.

Considerations
Community links:
  • require considerable time to establish and monitor;
  • require community orientation with respect to student needs and developmental levels, as well as student orientation to community needs and expectations;
  • provide opportunity for students to learn social responsibility through community involvement;
  • require effort to ensure community members feel welcome and valued and find their experience satisfying;
  • require close monitoring by teachers to ensure that problems are solved along the way;
  • require that the diversity of the local community is reflected in the projects.

Illustrations From The Mathematics Classroom

Elementary
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Secondary
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