SERVICE LEARNING STATEMENT
Service Learning A key emphasis of the Westmark education is on the development of responsible members of society who contribute their time, energies, and talents to improving the quality of life in our school, community, nation, and world.
A superb education is much more than knowledge gained within the walls of a classroom. Service to our community helps develop our students’ realization of their ability to act as contributing and positive members of their community, both within and outside of Westmark.
In addition, service learning provides opportunities to build leadership experiences, develop creative talents, and increase awareness of the world at large. Students may even explore career paths as a result of volunteer involvement and thoughtful reflection.
GOALS OF THE WESTMARK SERVICE LEARNING PROGRAM
- To shape young adults who possess strong personal values and who understand the importance and benefit of helping others.
- To develop leadership and teamwork skills.
- To build relationships with non-profit organizations and the outside community.
- To fine tune unique talents and interests.
- To uphold the principles of community involvement and thoughtful action.
- To learn how to effectively engage with the complex global society.
Westmark integrates service learning in each grade level’s curriculum.
Service opportunities will be age appropriate in breadth and depth. During school hours, each grade level will have a chance to prepare for and learn about their service learning project, perform their service, and debrief and discuss their experiences. We want to ensure that 100% of our staff and students are involved in service to our Los Angeles community and beyond.
Specific service learning projects will be highlighted at the beginning of the year, however we also want to be ready to extend our services should any pressing need present itself during the year. We also strongly encourage students and families to inquire within their own community, church, synagogue, scout groups, YMCA, local hospitals, food collection agencies, etc…to see what opportunities are available. Some of the richest experiences are those that a family does together.
RECORD YOUR SERVICE HOURS
Middle School students join 8-12th Grade students for their adventures to Pali Institute. As part of Westmark’s signature experiential learning program. 6th, 7th and 8th Grade students traveled to Pali Institute for outdoor adventures that also provided opportunity to learn the values of leadership, teamwork, and communication.
Students learned to place trust in their classmates, got creative, took some risks, forged new friendships and had tons of fun!
Over Spring break each year, 8th Grade students have the opportunity to travel to either Washington D.C. or Boston (alternating years). Students have the opportunity to visit historic landmarks that tie closely to their classroom curriculum. The kids enjoy being together outside of the school's setting, as they gain independence, develop deeper relationships, and explore the nation's monuments.