Intergenerational Service Learning Programs
The Intergenerational Program is committed to enhancing understanding between divergent age groups and empowering students and elders to take an active role in improving their community. Intergenerational programs may include youth serving elders, elders serving youth, or youth and elders serving together. Projects can take a variety of forms, including cross-age reading, computer tutoring, and the compilation of an oral history. The IGESL provides training and support to youth and adults for developing a variety of international programs and publishes a facilitator’s manual for implementing an Intergenerational Oral History Project.
Why Intergenerational Service Learning
While participating in an intergenerational project, students and elders of the community have the opportunity to establish partnerships that often endure long past the completion of the project. Such projects empower students and elders to promote understanding across generations, while taking an active role in their communities, and meeting real community needs. Elders and students alike serve as valuable community assets.
- Real academic learning
- A project with a vital effect on the community
- Lasting relationships between students, teachers, school administrators, elders, and community leaders
- Download Intergenerational Worksheet
Intergenerational Oral History Program
The Intergenerational Oral History Program is a service-learning model that is easily implemented into a school setting, after-school programs, and community or faith based organizations. Students participating in an intergenerational oral history project learn to do scholarly research, conduct interviews, write biographies, and are given the option of producing a book. Partnerships are established with senior members of the community (elders) while students earn credits toward graduation, satisfy requirements for multi-disciplinary or service-learning projects, and learn about the history of their community, culture or faith.
Intergenerational Service Learning Projects Facilitator’s Manual
The Intergenerational Program was instituted by the IGESL’s founder Dr. Harry Silcox with the mission of preserving the local history in every neighborhood of Philadelphia in the form of a community history book. The Institute for Global Education and Service-Learning has already published several books that are available at most public libraries in Philadelphia, including:
- Memories Along the Wissahickon
- Kensington History: Stories and Memories
- Historical Northeast Philadelphia: Stories and Memories
- Struttin’ Through Time – South Philly Style: Stories and Memories of South Philadelphia – ORDER NOW!
West Side Stories: A West Philadelphia Intergenerational Oral History Project
This project brought together the diverse population of West Philadelphia through a series of informal interviews to capture the culture and personality of one of Philadelphia’s oldest areas. Local high school, middle school, and elementary school students interviewed senior citizens in order to document the historical changes of West Philadelphia through the eyes of its most distinguished members. Historical photographs, along with essays from leading West Philadelphian scholars, add depth to the first-hand accounts provided by seniors. The result is a publication that reveals the multi-dimensional character of this area and population. – ORDER NOW!