Wednesday, April 4, 2012

WHO LET THE DOGS OUT? A Service Learning Project Produced by 4th Graders

I belong to an organization called Need in Deed. Located in Philadelphia, NID is geared toward helping teachers conduct meaningful service learning in their classrooms. As a member of NID, I am a part of a network of teachers who work in schools throughout the city. I also work with a project manager who helps me to coordinate community visits and solicit support from local organizations and programs that would enhance my students' service learning project. This program provides me with the support and resources necessary to make service learning meaningful! The staff is wonderful! They are organized and detailed, and every event I attend reflects their belief that teachers are valued professionals!

 I have to admit that there are a few perks too! We have the opportunity to receive mini grants that can be used in our clasrooms (for anything, not just your project), there host a variety of professional outings (with really good food!) and they even throw in Phillies tickets at the end of the year! As a network member I've been invited to participate in speaking events and presentations. This last fall I sat on the panel discussion for the documentary American Teacher. I love the support this organization gives me as a teacher and I am always surrounded by other teachers who love their job as much as I do. 

 Many people think that there is not enough time to do service learning in the classroom. However the NID framework shows you how you can take eligible content and service learning topics/lesson and marry the two. Any teacher who believes that service learning is important will definitely find the time to incorporate it into their classroom, and the project manager makes it a lot easeier. The benefits are endless! My students often write for a variety of purposes, they can defend a real life cause and highlight important issues that effect them. They have learned how to make Power Point presentations, write/direct/edit mini movies, create podcasts, and CREATE A CLASSROOM BLOG! Check out all that they have done! This year my class chose animal abuse. Their goal was to first teach their peers about animal abuse. They then provided pet care tips to teach their peers on how to prevent animal abuse. They hosted a supply drive and donated supplies to PEACE FOR PUPPIES who in turn donated their supplies to an animal shelter. Thier classroom blog was a part of their "SPREAD THE WORD" movement. Their goal was 50 followers and 10,000 pageviews. Please stop by and follow their blog! They would LOVE the support. Also you can view their  TV Show that aired to the school on March 23. Leave them a comment, let them know your reading!

View the 4th Grade Pet Detectives' Trailer!



  1. What a great organization to be involved with! Your students sound like they are learning so much because of it.

    Teaching in Room 6

  2. Cool organization!! And very cute blog name :) I'm your newest follower! :)

    Let's Teach Something