“What strategies and resources are available to me to integrate community engagement into my teaching?”
This section of the toolkit is your answer. It offers you guidance about service learning and community engagement (SLCE) organized into the eight categories below. In addition, a repository of Community Engagement Action Guides can be found at the bottom of this page. It is a living resource, and we will be updating it frequently. Please contact Ruthie Yow, SLS Service Learning and Partnerships Specialist (firstname.lastname@example.org) with your ideas for improving it!
The Smart Cities Kit is a set of hands-on materials that supports collaborative scenario building activities. These activities can foster a greater understanding of smart-cities as socio-technical systems. Through these activities, students should develop an appreciation for how smart cities technologies fit or don’t fit into the fabric of everyday life in the city. The kit requires no background knowledge in design or participatory methods. It can be customized for specific technologies or scenarios, and it can be used across the curriculum. The Smart City tool is available for check-out from the Serve-Learn-Sustain office.
Each kit imagines a team of 5-10 students, but it is possible to make a single kit stretch over twenty students. Email us for more details, and to inquire about check-out.
This exercise invites students to explore what it means to take an asset-based approach to community development (“an ABCD” approach), versus a “needs” or “deficit” approach. Students are broken into groups and given a description of a community. One group is given a list of assets while another group is given a list of needs. Students come up with recommendations for a nonprofit to engage with the community and then compare and contrast the recommendations. The exercise concludes with an explanation of ABCD principles.
In-depth community engagement shapes green infrastructure projects and their impacts on communities. Use this tool to explore the role of community engagement and local knowledge in green infrastructure planning processes. Students will learn the importance of engaging communities in green infrastructure planning for incorporating local knowledge of community assets, needs, and priorities. The discussion questions will aid students in examining the potential opportunities and threats associated with green infrastructure; the importance of community engagement and knowledge sharing in shaping project outcomes; and how green infrastructure planning processes might be designed to prioritize local knowledge of community needs and priorities and to draw on community assets in order to support more sustainable and equitable outcomes.