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Academics » Community-Connected Learning

Community-Connected Learning

Community connections enrich experiential learning and create a relevance for students that supports their development as young citizens. Our local community offers an abundance of opportunities to engage in fieldwork, interview experts, and grow through service projects. Ongoing community connected learning nurtures the development of lifelong learners. These are learners who realize that learning can be done anywhere at any time with an attitude of inquiry and metacognition. They are often people who work to make their communities better places. From preschool through sixth grade at Carlson, we regularly connect students’ learning to our community in a variety of ways in all subject areas, because building good citizens requires more than good test scores, it requires being a life-long learner. 

Community-Connected Learning Project: Human Rights

In fifth grade, our students dig into their own backgrounds and identities as they learn about human rights and the importance of accepting and valuing each other as unique individuals. As part of their study, they read the novel Esperanza Rising—the story of a young girl who immigrates to the United States. Our students visit Casa de Paz in Aurora and learn about the everyday journey of immigrants to our country. After volunteering for a day, they better understand how Casa de Paz supports immigrants who are being released from the ICE detention center. Not only do they gain a deeper understanding of the character in the novel, through this work they learn the power of their own voice and the impact they can have on others.

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