Introduction to the Host Setting<br />We created a service learning blog (overseen by Dr. Rebecca Hines) that is geared towards elementary students. <br />Our goal with the blog is to engage elementary students in various service learning projects. <br /><ul><li>We collaborated with UCP of Central Florida in working with a peer facilitator from their College Transition Program. </li></li></ul><li>Engagement Activities<br />The Community needs that we addressed involved service learning needs and interests of the elementary student community. <br />Service learning project ideas were presented over a series of 5 Weeks .<br />We met weekly to work on the blog as well as working on the blog on our own. We each found different aspects of service learning that we could upload to the blog, such as activities, examples, resources, and events. <br />We started the project by emailing Dr. Hines to inquire about how best we could help with a need in the community, and she informed of us how we could expand service learning ideas into the technological world through blogger.com. <br />
Participant Demographics<br />Due to the nature of our presentation, we did not serve a specific organization, but rather focused on creating a blog that would appeal to elementary students of any background. <br />
<ul><li> Excited about embarking on our project
Some of us were less comfortable with the technological aspect of the project we were all happy to be working on a team with a peer facilitator who had disabilities as well.
Our thoughts remain the same; we were grateful to be able to experience teamwork on a whole new level.
The greatest impact that we had was learning how to creatively make a project that could suit younger learners' interest and age level as well as encourage them to be enthusiastic about service learning.</li></ul>Perception of Differences<br />
Connections to the Course<br />Three course topics that we understand better are:<br /> “Postsecondary Service Options,” <br />“Challenges of Adolescence” <br /> “Leisure Education for Positive Leisure Life-Styles.” <br /><ul><li>Postsecondary Options includes the concept of individuals with disabilities transitioning to independence after high school
Challenges of adolescence includes students needing to feel accepted in the classroom and community
Leisure Education encompasses activities that students enjoy that can also help them to relax and make time to “de-stress,” so to speak.</li></li></ul><li>As we worked with our peer facilitator, we saw that he already transitioned into the college environment and had faced many challenges throughout his life. These challenges helped him to learn about social aspects of his life in various ways. Also, the blog that we created could be a form of a “leisure activity” for the students that we wanted to present the blog to since it is not only educational, but provides an outlet for student learning via the internet in a fun and creative way. Throughout our future profession, we hope to be able to aid our students with disabilities in a smooth transition from elementary or middle school to high school, college, and beyond. (Schloss, Schloss, & Schloss, 2007). <br />EEX 3243<br />
Final Thoughts<br />Pleased with the efforts that we gave in the blog project<br />We would have loved to be able to present our blog to students<br /><ul><li>If we did a blog in the future
We would love to meet with the young learners in person
Participate in some service learning activities
Give students updates via skype</li></li></ul><li>Visit Our Blog<br />www.UCFKindKids.blogspot.com<br />