Connected Curriculum or ‘Service Learning’ is Wellington’s integrated approach which invites students to engage with and learn academic subject content in the context of social change and social action. Service Learning is a rigorous and well-evidenced educational pedagogy which brings life to learning by incorporating meaningful community engagement, academic inquiry and critical reflection into each experience. Independence is developed through creation and execution of the project by a student team, led by a student leader, supported by a staff mentor. Projects generally come from the student’s own passions and interests as they develop their projects and engage with the wider world.
The projects which Wellingtonians have been recently involved with include:
- The Gurkha Community (Politics) – students learn about the Gurkha Justice Movement, engage with the local Gurkha population in Sandhurst and the surrounding area, and write up oral histories to teach others. They aim to raise awareness about the issues which Gurkhas currently face and the policies which affect them.
- Son-Rise Autism (Biology/Medicine) — students are taught about autism (diagnosis, challenges, history and interventions) and then support a young community member who has this developmental disability. They learn about approaches to treatment and support.
- GIS Mapping (Geography) — students use GIS mapping technology to develop informative reports for local leaders demonstrating their findings and creating awareness campaigns to help decrease anti-social behaviour in the community, including littering and graffiti.
- Sue Ryder Charity Shop Project (DT and Textiles) — students’ partner one of our local charity shops and explore and implement strategies for upcycling and recycling their products using skills in DT and Art. Students also volunteer and work to raise awareness about upcycling and supporting local businesses which use these strategies.