Sunday, March 16, 2014

Why Help?

Joseph Kahne and Joel Westheimer join together and write about the politics of Service Learning.


The part that I connected to most in this document is when the speak about the three different domains. These being moral, political, and intellectual.

"In the moral domain. service learning activities tend toward two types of relationships. Relationships that emphasize charity we will call "giving." Those that aim primarily to deepen relationships and to forge new connections we will call "caring." In caring relationships, Nel Noddings asserts, we try to consider the life and disposition of those for whom we are caring. We attempt to "apprehend the reality of the other" and then to "struggle [for progress] together." In so doing. we create opportunities for changing our understanding of the other and the context within which he or she lives."
Here is the paragraph written about the moral domain. It explains how service learning is based on two things: caring and giving. In my opinion I believe that these two do not also go together. Many individuals do care for each other but do not to have the power to give. When many people can give, so they do so but do not really care. This brings up the political domain.


"In the political domain, the intentions of those promoting service learning activities draw from two different assumptions about political socialization and what it means to be a citizen. Those who focus primarily on charity believe that, to be properly educated in a democracy. students must undergo experiences that demonstrate the value of altruism and the dangers of exclusive self-interest. They stress the importance of civic duty and the need for responsive citizens. Volunteerism and compassion tor the less fortunate are the undergirding conceptions of political socialization associated with this vision.  The second notion of political socialization reveals fundamentally different assumptions about the requirements of citizenship. Those promoting this vision of service learning hope to move students toward participation in what Benjamin Barber refers to as a "strong democracy.  "They call for a curriculum that emphasizes critical reflection about social policies and conditions, the acquisition of skills of political participation, and the formation of social bonds."
What I see here is that the politics of things force people to do service learning and community service. In my high school we had to do 5 hours each year to graduate. People spent weeks procrastinating it and not doing it. Or even worse filling out the paper work and faking the attendance. Now, my city is a pretty fortunate city from the side the school was so I just could not understand why my classmates could not just give five hours of their time to help someone.

"In the intellectual domain. a service learning curriculum can further a number of goals. The ability of a service learning curriculum to foster authentic, experience-based learning opportunities, to motivate students, to help students engage in higher-order thinking in contextually varied environments, and to promote interdisciplinary studies has led some, such as John Brisco, a leader in the field, to label service learning "the Trojan horse of school reform." The service component may help us get the support needed for implementation, he argues, but its real impact is seen in its ability to promote powerful learning environments."
This is why it is important for high school students to give back. To learn there is more out there than just your city. That people are less fortunate than yourself. I also believe that every person on this earth has something that's unfortunate in their life. Either its a loved one dying of a disease, not having food, shelter or rent, or having a family or people to just talk to. Everyone on this earth is fortunate and unfortunate. It should be your own personal goal to show your fortunate and help others.


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