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Understanding the whole child through community experience and service

by the College of Education at Illinois / Nov 8, 2017

Understanding the whole child through community experience and service

The Identity and Difference in Education course (EDUC 201) allows preservice teachers in the College of Education and other students at the University of Illinois to understand children as members of families, communities, and neighborhoods before thinking about them as students in classrooms. Working through that lens, they receive placements at local organizations to volunteer and engage with kids and community members.

“Given the new programming that’s happening at every level of Curriculum & Instruction’s teacher education programs, we’ve really worked hard to advance clinical education to support this new vision and make sure there’s an appropriate alignment that enhances the experiences for our students,” said Jay Mann, director of School and Community Experiences.

Mann said students in the EDUC 201 class have a voice in their preferred placement sites based on interest and availability. Additionally, they can utilize the same technological tools for field-placement management and evaluation that SCE uses for student-teaching placements in schools. 

The objective of the class is to help future educators understand the assets children bring to the classroom and establish how to utilize such qualities for growth in education.