Notes from the Teranga Center: Service in the MYP & DP


Service is a key component of an IB education. In the MYP we “aim to help students develop their personal understanding, their emerging sense of self and their developmentally appropriate responsibility in their community.” (From Principles to Practice p. 22) This translates into students getting to know more about themselves, their context, and their responsibility for the world around them.


At ISD our MYP students learn about and participate in Service in multiple ways. Students learn about service and the needs of others through the lens of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. Once students have a basic understanding of the SDG’s we move to a deeper level of asking, “now what can we do?” It is taking the service into action that is key. While Covid-19 makes it more difficult to interact with others in a physical sense, the students will examine ways to make a difference in the lives of others while keeping everyone safe. A highlight of Service as Action for ISD Secondary students is usually our Service in Senegal or Week Without Walls trips. While these won’t happen this year, we look forward to when they will be possible again.


According to the IBO, some of the empowered outcomes of Service can be:


  • feeling empathy towards others

  • making small-scale changes to their behavior

  • undertaking larger and more significant projects

  • acting on their own

  • acting collaboratively

  • taking physical action

  • suggesting modifications to an existing system to the benefit of all involved

  • lobbying people in more influential positions to act.


(From Principles to Practice, p 23)


Service as Action comes naturally after service in the PYP and then leads naturally to CAS (Creativity, Service, and Action) which is one of three CORE essential elements, alongside Theory of Knowledge and Extended Essay, that every student must complete as part of the Diploma Programme (DP) for the IB.


Studied throughout the Diploma Programme, CAS involves students in a range of activities alongside their academic studies. It is not formally assessed. However, students reflect on their CAS experiences as part of the DP and provide evidence of achieving eight learning outcomes.


The explanatory video link here was actually created by ISD graduate of 2020 Thomas Gonnet as a CAS project in and of itself. Please enjoy his excellent and informative work. To see additional information on CAS and Service Learning at ISD please visit the ISD CAS & SA website.


Finally, if you would like to learn more about Service at ISD, please join us for our Secondary Parent Coffee and Learning next week, Tuesday, December 1st, at 8:30am in Lorne Bird’s Zoom Room.

The International School of Dakar

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