SLP Summer Lab
What is SLP Summer Lab?
This virtual version of SLP takes place over 8 weeks during the summer. Each participant commits to one group meeting per week- – this takes place through Zoom at a set time – – and a minimum of 30 minutes of independent work.
SLP Summer Lab follows our proven effective model of action civics. With the guidance of an experienced facilitator, participants work together to:
- Choose a social issue which they are passionate about
- Become experts on their issue through extensive research
- Develop an alternative solution
- Create and implement a plan to advocate for their solution
- Reflect on the experience and consider how they can continue to use their new leadership and advocacy skills
Who can participate?
Summer Labs are open to rising 4-12th grade students from anywhere in the United States and are organized by mixed age groups: upper elementary (4th-5th graders), middle school, and high school. The Lab groups are small, with 10 students each, ensuring that each student can participate fully and receive individual support, when needed, from the facilitator.
How do Summer Labs Work?
Like all SLP projects, Summer Labs are youth-driven, meaning that the students drive every step of the process from selecting the social problem to deciding how they want to help solve it to implementing their plan for positive change.
Our experienced Faculty support Lab participants as they move through the five phases of an SLP project:
- Week 1: Introduction and Issue Brainstorm
Students will get to know each other and the SLP process. They will also brainstorm a list of possible issues to work on.
- Week 2: Issue Selection
Students come to consensus on one social problem to help solve (this process includes small group pitches for specific issues).
- Weeks 3-5: Research
Students become experts on their issue by conducting extensive research both as a group and independently for at least 30 minutes per week. They will decide what research activities to conduct but typical examples include online research, data collection, surveying members of their community, interviewing experts, and more!
- Week 6-7: Action Planning
Students consider a range of possible solutions and then decide which one(s) they believe would be most effective. They then develop a plan to implement or advocate for their solution.
- Week 8: Take Action! And Reflect
Previous SLP projects include advocacy campaigns directed at local legislators, producing Public Service Announcements (PSA) and other awareness raising campaigns, fundraising and other direct service, and more! Click here for examples of SLP projects completed by students in grades K-12.
Every SLP project looks different because the students drive the process. The ultimate goal is to give young people the opportunity, tools, confidence, and support they need to create real change in their community.
How can I apply?
Interested in joining an SLP Summer Lab? Complete the application here. If you have questions about the application, or about SLP Summer Lab more generally, please contact us at email@example.com