Service Learning Program Resources
“I truly believe these service-learning experiences have made me a more effective teacher and have provided students a voice and a chance to show how much of a difference they can make as a citizen, even at a young age.”
-Barry J. Guillot, NBCT | 8th Grade Earth Science, Harry Hurst Middle School
To research the topic of service learning, find ideas for lesson plans, and learn what other students are accomplishing through service learning, explore the resources below:
STEM Library Lab has curated several pinboards full of lesson plans, reflection activities, project ideas, and other tools to help you develop your service learning program.
STEM Library Lab has compiled an extensive list of reflection activities that can be used in your service learning projects.
National Youth Leadership Council
IPARD service-learning model. NYLC leads the field of service-learning by redefining the role of young people in society. List of listserv(s). Service Learning toolkits. K-12 Service-Learning Standards for Quality Practice. Project examples. Service Learning Handbook.
The GoodCharacter Service Learning Primer
K-12 project examples. Reflection questions and activities.
Learning to Give
Lesson plans for K-12 coded to Common Core standards.
Youth Service America
Project ideas including virtual service projects. Toolkits. Lesson plans. Webinars. Technology Tools for Service Learning.
Lesson plans. Guides for kids and teens on tackling the subjects of climate change and global warming, hunger and homeless, reading, protecting and caring for animals.
Malcolm Shabazz City High School
Service learning ideas arranged by subject area.
Lists of nonprofit organizations/potential community partners.
Trash Tree Waste Awareness
Project ideas. Lesson plans. Curriculum web on how to connect the topic to academic subjects. Students at New Foundations Charter School in Philadelphia educate the community about “reduce, reuse, and recycle.”
Harkins Consulting, LLC
Project ideas for all ages and all subjects.
Constitutional Rights Foundation
History/Civics/Social Studies. Lesson plans. Project ideas.
Water science lesson plans for middle and high school, including rain barrel installation.
KIDS Consortium, Integrating Scientific Practices and Service-Learning Guide
STEM service learning project ideas.
United Nations Sustainable Development Goals
IPARD Service-Learning Process. Lesson plans. Student Resource Library with project ideas.
Lesson plans for science, SEL, and service learning.
PowerPoint Template for student service learning orientation
This is an optional PowerPoint and worksheet that can be modified and used to introduce students to service learning. Your first lesson should include an overview of the IPARD process that students will follow during the service learning project.
Research on Service Learning
- Engaged for Success: Service-Learning as a Tool for High School Dropout Prevention. (2008, April). A Report by Civic Enterprises in association with Peter D. Hart Research Associates for the National Conference on Citizenship.
- Build a Bridge Between Service and Learning. (2010). Kielsmeier, James. The Phi Delta Kappan. Volume 91. Issue 5. 8-15.
- Service-Learning in Early Adolescence Results of a School-Based Curriculum. (March 2013). Richards, Maryse & Cornelli Sanderson, Rebecca & Celio, Christine & Grant, Jane & Choi, Inhe & George, Christine & Deane, Kyle. Journal of Experiential Education. Vol 36, Issue 1. 5-21.
- Support for K-12 Service-Learning Practice: A Brief Review of the Research. (2002). Billig, Shelley.
- Getting Started in Service-Learning: Integrating the Process into K-12 Teaching. National Youth Leadership Council. Revised edition: 2021.
- An Investigation of Indicators of Success in Graduates of a Progressive, Urban, Public High School. (Jan. 2016) Kunkel, Christine D. Critical Questions in Education, vol. 7, no. 2, pp. 146–167.
- Service Learning in the Middle Grades: Learning by Doing and Caring. (Feb. 2018) Farber, Katy, and Penny Bishop. Research in Middle Level Education Online, vol. 41, no. 2, pp. 1–15. EBSCOhost, doi:10.1080/19404476.2017.1415600.
- Learning by Experience in a Standardized Testing Culture: Investigation of a Middle School Experiential Learning Program. (Mar. 2017). Scogin, Stephen C., et al. Journal of Experiential Education, vol. 40, no. 1, pp. 39–57. EBSCOhost, search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=eric&AN=EJ1129193&site=ehost-live.
- Learning by Doing: Service Learning as a Means of Personal Growth in the Middle Grades. (2017). Katherine A. Farber. Current Issues in Middle Level Education 22 (1), 1-9.
- Empowering Elementary Students through Environmental Service-Learning. (Winter 2021). Merritt, Eileen, Tracy Harkins, and Sara Rimm-Kaufman. CLEARING: The journal of community-based environmental literacy education.
- Advancing Equity through Service Learning: Building on Strengths Students Have Gained after a Year of Turmoil. (2021). Grossman, Jean, and Nancy Duchesneau. Solutions for Educational Equity through Social and Emotional Well-Being. MDRC.
- Can service-learning boost science achievement, civic engagement, and social skills? A randomized controlled trial of Connect Science. (2021). Rimm-Kaufman, Sara E., et al. Journal of Applied Developmental Psychology 74.
- Service-learning for the public good: Educating for social justice. (2017). Stallworth-Clark, Rosemarie. Journal of Education & Social Justice. 5.1. 81-93. <article was downloaded>
- Developing Social Justice Skills through Community Service-Learning in High School Social Studies. (2020). Lucman, Sharehann T. The Councilor: A Journal of the Social Studies. Vol. 81: No. 2, Article 2.
Ready-to-go Service Learning Projects
Available for a limited time while supplies last
Rain Barrel Project with Green Light New Orleans
The Joe W. and Dorothy Dorsett Brown Foundation is pleased to support Green Light New Orleans’ Rain Barrel Service Learning Program. Green Light repurposes rain barrels to combat erosion and street flooding, and they invite your students to help with this process. Green Light will provide rain barrels, lesson plans, and paint materials to your school. This project is available to schools within the levee system of Orleans Parish and Metairie, Louisiana. To apply, submit a completed application.
We are now offering a new lesson plan to accompany the project!
Get In the Scrap! with The National World War II Museum
The Joe W. and Dorothy Dorsett Brown Foundation is a proud sponsor of The National World War II Museum’s Get in the Scrap! Service Learning Program. Inspired by the scrapping efforts of youth during World War II, Get in the Scrap! is a national service learning project about recycling and energy conservation. Most projects can be done without students leaving a school campus. To sign up, visit getinthescrap.org.