Background: In recent years, more and more secondary schools in Hong Kong begin to employ service learning in designing student learning activities. A vast majority of these attempts is developed based on the philanthropic ideas of altruism, love and care; it involves serving elderly people living in the elderly homes far away from the school community. While it is quite right to say that both the students and the elderly people benefit from these projects; the connection of these students to their community, as well as the student learning from the senior citizens in these projects are still in question. In other words, there is a missing linkage between student learning and the community in these philanthropic service learning projects.
Aims or focus of discussion: In this paper, we suggest to bridge this missing linkage with the concept "classroom in community" to connect students, and their learning, with the community.
Arguments / comments /suggestion: Based on the service learning curriculum derived by us with local secondary schools, we will illustrate how "classroom in community" could facilitate students to learn from and learn for their community, and to act with the community to co-produce public goods. Examples of community based services for elderly people will be used to further elaborate how students could initiate community services through collective dialogues with the community, in these cases, to get connected with their community by serving the elderly people and learning from them as senior citizens.
Conclusion: A summary of the characteristics of the approach of classroom in community to service learning is suggested to conclude the paper.