IBMYP Service As Action

What to expect and where to find what you need

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Making our community stronger, one act of service at a time.

Service as action is a foundational element of the International Baccalaureate (IB) Middle Years Programme (MYP). It seeks to develop caring members of the community who act to make a positive difference to the lives of others and their environment.

Service as action requires students to engage with their local community through community service and provides opportunities for students to explore, design, implement, and reflect on their efforts to positively impact their local environment.

Through service as action experiences, students learn the value of community participation and gain a deeper understanding of the issues facing their immediate surroundings.

The 7 Learning Outcomes of Service as Action

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The 4 Types of Service

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Service As Action Q&A

Q: My student already does community service with other groups. How is this different?

  • A: Service as Action is directly tied to what your student is currently learning in their IB classes and they have different ways to serve than just the traditional in-person community service model. For more detailed information, please watch our Service as Action screencast (Linked above)

Q: If students have all year to complete Service hours, what is the purpose of Semester-End due dates?

  • A: Depending on the number of students and events being submitted, it can take your Coordinator hours, or even days, to go through these, verify hours and record the hours on Connect. If we didn't have the Semester-End due dates, most students would procrastinate until the weekend before the final due date and it would take your Coordinator weeks to go through everything AND if students had any missing documents or evidence (which happens frequently) they would not have time to collect what was needed, thus the student would not get credit for those hours. More importantly, the longer a student waits to reflect on the service they did, the harder it will be to recall their learning and how it connects to classroom instruction.

Q: What if I cannot find a service that fits the topic we covered in class? Can I use what's available outside the community even if it doesn't link to the class?

  • A: Direct service, also known as community service, must be directly related to the current unit of study selected. If you are having trouble finding an option, feel free to discuss this further with your IB teachers or coordinator.

Q: Can we work collaboratively with other IB Learners?

  • A: Yes! As you are all being exposed to the same unit of study and collaboration is highlighted in IB Learner Profile and ATL skills, it is appropriate to work in groups. To ensure that each student is engaged and invested in the service, each member of the group must choose a different aspect of service to address. Two or more members, for example, cannot all engage in research. One student may choose advocacy while another student may choose research.

Q: I'm ready to do my service - where do I go to get approval?

  • A: Your Coordinator has all the documents and links you need in Google Classroom or Canvas. Please email your Coordinator if you can't find it.

Q: What if I change my mind after the proposal was approved?

  • A: Remember that one of the learning outcomes is to persevere in action. It is strongly recommended that you see the service as action through to completion. If, however, there are extenuating circumstances that prohibit your ability to complete the service, you are welcome to resubmit a new proposal and start again. All hours and activities associated with the previous proposal will become null and void towards the required hours. Before you make this decision, please meet with your assigned Service Leader or Coordinator to determine if starting over is the most appropriate action.

Q: My son didn't submit any Service As Action hours during first semester. Please let me know if his grade will go down since he didn’t submit?

  • A: Grades and report cards are not connected to Service hours and will be unaffected if students do not submit hours. However, the end of the year Certificate of Completion, the 8th-Grade Medallion, and the 10th-Grade Pin ARE! Please help your student remember to complete their required hours by the final due date!

Q: Is there an advantage of getting Service As Action hours done early?

  • A: Absolutely! Not only do students no longer have to worry about finding events after they have completed their service requirements, it also helps reduce the End-of-the-Semester or End-of-the-Year stress that comes with added academic assessments and other activities they may be involved in. Students are always welcome to complete additional service hours after they meet their minimum requirement if they feel inspired to do so.

Q: Where can I find Service opportunities:

  • A: Your student will be collaborating in their classrooms to brainstorm several ways to apply their classroom learning to Service. At the end of an IB Unit, students will work together in class to come up with examples of each of the the 4-types of Service and they will create a list of opportunities to choose from. Once they decide which opportunities they are most interested in, they can submit a Service as Action Proposal Form and get approval from their Coordinator.

Q: How do I know if something qualifies as a Service as Action opportunity?

  • A: Your MYP Coordinator will approve your Service as Action Proposal Form via email. Coordinators will also email students if a clarification meeting is needed.

Q: I want to start doing my hours now (during the summer). How do I submit my hours for credit?

  • A: Because Service as Action has to be tied to current classroom learning summer service hours will not be accepted.

Service As Action for 2023-2024

The IBO has identified 7 learning outcomes as part of the Service as Action component of the MYP. Each activity/service should focus on at least one service learning outcome but no more than 4 to ensure you are deeply reflecting on the impact of your service.

All students are required to have completed at least one service per category (direct, indirect, actionable research and advocacy) by the end of the school year as well as a final service reflection demonstrating how they completed each of the 7 learning outcomes.

Remember: The sooner you start, the more opportunities you have to choose from, and the sooner you will be finished! Your teachers will provide collaboration time with your classmates to come up with Service opportunities that align with the lessons you are learning in class.

Before you start doing any service, you must submit a Service As Action Proposal Form and get approval from your Coordinator!

Your Coordinator will have a central place (Canvas or Google Classroom) to find the Proposal Form and the Process Journal you will need to submit your hours, and will make sure all students have access in the first few weeks of the new school year.

Deadlines: 2023-2024

Approximately 50% of your service requirements should be submitted by December 14, 2023 including an approved proposal, evidence and process journal submission

All service requirements must be submitted by April 30, 2024