Great article detailing the specifics and benefits of service learning projects from blog, Education Transformation.
Service Learning Projects - Project Based Learning Taken Further
"Authentic learning is about engaging with the material, grappling with tough questions, reflection and the ability to apply knowledge in a given situation and assesses the outcomes of the application. Service learning projects, provide students with these experiences in a very real way, in a way that they just cannot get from text books, lecture or test preparation..."
"When service learning projects are implemented as part of the curriculum not only do students begin to think about the world and their place in it, teachers and administrators do as well. When students engage in service learning projects they tend to have a more positive self - image, greater social awareness; gain social skills, feel a sense of independence and empowerment, and reflect upon their humanity and the humanity of others..."