Tuesday, September 6, 2016

In reading Youth Work: preparation in practice I found that I did not feel as enlightened on the message behind this piece of writing. The confusion continued on as I was not sure what were the 7 characteristics of Youth Work. What I catch onto were the topics within the writing, for example educational practice, social practice, social justice, involvement of youth, influence, welfare and the element of holistic.

In thinking about educational practice, youth workers are acting different from a teacher's role. They do instruct but in a "play" kind of way. For example, a youth worker could teach children on how to swim. The group of children would be learning something valuable, however it is something fun and interactive. An establishment such as the YMCA would be a great example of this. Personally, as a child who learned how to swim at the Y, I can say that it was fun to learn how to swim. I was not sitting a classroom on stiff uncomfortable chair being talked with the expectation that I and others will learn something.

I define social practice as an association or organized group of people with a common purpose or common interest. The word social simply means to speak with other people around, more than likely people who hold a similar interest that you hold. This could be a group of people who enjoy working with kids who deal with a disability. For example, the camp Hole In the Wall Gang is a designated space for people to hold a career helping kids have fun in life so they forget they deal with an issue. There mission and statement are...

Our PurposeThe Hole in the Wall Gang Camp is dedicated to providing “a different kind of healing” to seriously ill children and their families throughout the Northeast, free of charge. It’s a community that celebrates the fun, friendship and spirit of childhood, where every kid can “raise a little hell.”

Our GoalTo ensure that every child with a serious medical condition has the chance to experience the world of possibilities that camp has to offer. Through the generosity of others, The Hole in the Wall Gang Camp community provides this unique healing experience to kids in need and their families, including those who may not be able to come to Camp.

Another aspect is social justice. Ideally youth workers would aim to assist kids who are excluded by any sort of stereotype or barrier. The article held importance in find a good way to address power that has an imbalance instead of stating what should be said. I think another part that weaves well is convincing youth to be interested in saying something to improve a possible issue. I think the goal is to help youth by showing how an issue such as improving a stereotype that has been said and caused pain. This reminds me of the freedom writers. The character that did help the students was their teacher. However, the teacher acted like a mentor who was willing to listen but be stern when need be. The educator allowed the students to open up by writing in journals. She made this opportunity so the students could write about anything and she allowed it to be confidential or share between the student and teacher. This teacher showed the beauty of learning in an interactive way almost like an youth worker. For example, she utilized field trips where hands on learning occurs. The class went to the holocaust where they learned about history with less than kind people. 

In helping someone, welfare which is all about holding compassion for one another so that person can find guidance. In giving guidance,a holistic nature is vital. Holistic means a whole thing is comprised of many parts so to make change, some areas need improvement while things change it will alter the whole. In the movie, The Freedom Writers, the student felt empowered by this teacher because she believed in them. They found respect for her because she did not talk down upon them but instead made time to get to know them and give them a chance to show that they were smart so they could be something successful. 

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