Authors: Argene A. Clasara and Arnaldo C. Relator
The study of community entails us to understand our very own community life. It gives us the idea on how to realize our daily involvement and engagement to one another that is called socialization. In the Interaction process, people grasp the challenges of community life. Using the imaginative and rational ideas of social sciences, we tend to investigate how socialization affects the dynamics and actions in a community whether for improvement, development or destruction. This module is geared towards elaborating the importance of studying community dynamics and action as well as the definitions of community in various perspectives such as social science, institutional, civil and grassroots levels.
Most Essential Learning Competencies
- Explain the importance of studying community dynamics and community action in relation to applied social sciences and the learners’ future career options
By the end of this module, learners are expected to demonstrate an understanding of:
- The integration of Social Science perspective and community action.
By the end of this module, learners are expected to:
- Synthesize the integrative experience of implementing community action initiatives applying Social Science’s ideas and methods.
Lesson 1: Concepts and Perspectives of Community
At the end of the lesson, the student is expected to be able to:
- Analyze the importance of understanding community dynamics and community action; and
- Explain the definitions of community based on various perspectives.
- Civil society – a space separate from the state wherein citizens can pursue social change.
- Community dynamics – factors and influences that realize historical structural changes in and within the community.
- Community action/ process – the process of eliciting change in the community through the process of forming social relationships for the common good
- Social change -the social transformation being aimed by community action evident in the alteration of social institutions, behaviors, and relations.
Self-Evaluation Form (Part I)
Answer the following questions.
1. What comes to your mind when you hear the word community?
2. What do you think are the definitions of a community in terms of various perspectives?
What is community? Townsend and Hansen (2001) pointed out that communities are social groups defined by some claimed commonality of their members, such as national origin, race, ethnicity, religion, gender or shared values.
Elements of a sense of community
The four components of a sense of community are membership, influence, integration and fulfillment of needs, and shared emotional ties, as depicted in the diagram above.
Sub-lesson 1: Definitions of Community
What is the meaning of community in social science perspective?
- Historically and politically, the understanding of the community can be traced to the community structure of ancient Greece called polis or city-state. This structure is protected by outer walls, and within its walls, public spaces such as temples and government buildings are found. The polis was centered in the urban area and was surrounded by the countryside.
- Sociologists understand the community with Gemeinschaft and Gesellchaft, and in terms of the institutional perspective. Gemeinschaft is characterized by the presence of a sense of what is common in terms of identity, norms, and relationships. Gesellchaft, on the other hand, is primarily formal, individualistic, impersonal, and transactional. In the institutional perspective, social institutions–such as the market and the state–driven by an ideological position, act to promote people’s welfare..
What is the definition of community in terms of civil perspective? Civil society is the ecosystem that influences social change outside of the family, market or government. Often referred to as the space where we act for the common good, civil society aims to connect poor or marginalized people with groups that can mobilize support to help.
A grassroots or bottoms-up movement aims to elicit change in the community coming from its non-leading members through collective action. This is in contrast with the top-down approach, where a change in the community is elicited by the leadership or the establishment and is simply complied with by the rest of the community population.
Sub-lesson 2: Importance of Understanding Community Dynamics and Community Action
Communities are built through individuals’ constant and significant interaction in a given geographical space. Through these continuous interactions, norms are formed to maintain them. These norms are common or shared, paving the way for the community. Etymologically, community derives from the Latin word communis
the disciplines, professions, and occupations that seek to use the social sciences to impact communities, organizations, and persons- aim to build just and humane communities concerned with the common good.
Have you noticed some recent changes in your community? The changes in the community are brought about by environmental, social and cultural experiences. Whether it is desirable or undesirable development that impacts within the community. People adopt the changes and it has shaped their way of life. These changes
are called Community dynamics. It aims to bring positive changes in all aspects of community through community actions. There are also instances that community dynamics affect or inhibit community action or positive change in the community.
Community actions aim to engage, understand, and empower communities in delivering vital services to its members. Community action, however, for it to be effective, should consider community dynamics. Understanding the inner mechanisms of the community would help community organizers in assessing the factors that may realize and/or prevent community action and positive change to happen. In addition, knowing community dynamics would ensure that all sectors would engage and participate in such initiatives, and
respective interests would be taken into account. For instance, for a holistic education intervention to work, community organizers should study first the family/community situation of the students. Studying their family/community situations would uncover why such educational challenges occur–education is not a priority among some families due to their economic situation which necessitated these students to work.
Knowing the various perspectives that define the community contextualizes the understanding of a community’s inner mechanisms or dynamics. This understanding of the community dynamics, particularly of how people adopt and induce change is important in initiating community action that aims to empower the said communities. Having a knowledge of how the community was formed would empower the social scientist in assessing the factors or resources that allowed such flourishing to occur, the challenges that they had to address in order to realize such flourishing, the skills tapped by the community in using these resources, as well as opportunities and threats to the community.
Self-Evaluation Form (Part 2)
1. Why is it important to be connected to the community?
2. What communities do you identify with and most involved in, as an individual?
DepEd Educational Technology Unit (ETU) (2022, February 17). SHS Community Engagement, Solidarity and Citizenship – Thursday Q3 Week 1 #ETUlayLevelUp. [Video]. YouTube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jSurdLajoHI
DepEd Educational Technology Unit (ETU) (2022, March 3). SHS Community Engagement, Solidarity and Citizenship – Thursday Q3 Week 3 #ETUlayLevelUp. [Video]. YouTube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lBVMkiXkF3s
List of Activities
Activity 1: Comparative Synthesis
Instructions. Compare and contrast the various definitions of the word “community.” Once done with this, consider Benedict Anderson’s assertion that “a nation is an imagined political community (You may read Benedict Anderson’s Imagined Communities: Reflections on the Origins and Spread of Nationalism, particularly Chapters 1, 9, and 10).” With Anderson’s assertion that the nation is an imagined political community, write a definition of community that synthesizes the various perspectives and Anderson’s assertion. Following this definition, write an essay with 2-3 paragraphs that explains how you arrived at such a definition.
Note to teacher: If the book is unavailable, the class may watch a briefer on Anderson’s imagined community which can be found at the Learning Materials section.
Activity 2: Essay
Instructions. Write an essay with 2-3 paragraphs about the dynamics and processes in the community. use the following guide questions below.
- Differentiate community dynamics and process
- What are the functions of a community in terms of power, leadership, relationships and social change?
- Illustrate your own community in terms of community dynamics and process
- relate your community dynamics and processes in various disciplines of social sciences and how it is related to your future career options.
Activity 1: My community, Our Community
Instructions. Make your own community map by showing its socio-political, economic and cultural dimensions.
Note to teacher: Divide the class according to their locality and ask the students to provide a concrete structure of their community. Put their community map in an illustration board and use recycled and creative materials.
Activity 2: Dear Community Leaders!
Instructions. As a concerned citizen in your community, write a letter to be addressed to your community leaders about the issues and problems that your locality is now facing. use your knowledge in community dynamics and processes.
Note to teacher: The task should be done individually. Remind the students that before conducting community assessment and writing a letter to the community leaders, they need to follow the minimum health standards set by the Philippine Department of Health (DOH). The letter should be on point about the issues and problems of their community. It should be in a narrative and descriptive way of presenting the facts and figures and not in an argumentative manner.
Self-Paced Learning (Optional Activities)
Activity 1: My Pledge as a Community Builder!
Instructions. ask the students to reflect on the structure, dynamics and processes in their community. Write a pledge as a community builder using the unique structure of the community as well as issues and challenges in the dynamics and processes.
Rubric for Discussions
|Excellent||Above Average||Developing||Needs Improvement|
The central theme/idea/argument of the student’s output is focused and supported by evidence which indicates mastery of the content.
The flow of the discussion of the central theme/idea/theme is coherent.
The form and presentation of the central theme/idea is clear, persuasive, polite, and easy to understand.
Rubric for Written Outputs
|Excellent||Above Average||Developing||Needs Improvement|
The central theme/idea of the paper is focused and supported by evidence which indicates mastery of the content.
The flow of the discussion of the central theme/idea is coherent.
The form and presentation of the central theme/idea is clear and easy to understand..
Benit-Gbaffou, C., & Katsura, O. (2014). Community Leadership and the Construction of Political Legitimacy: Unpacking Bourdieu’s ‘Political Capital’ in Post-Apartheid Johannesburg. International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, 38(5), 1807-1832.
Cohen, G. (2011). Social Psychology and Social Change. Science, 334 (6053), 178-179.
Sharan, M. (2004). Social Change and the Self-Concept. The Journal of Social Psychology, 92(2), 325-326.
Sullivan, H. (2007). ‘Interpreting’ community ‘leadership’ in English local government. Policy & Politics, 35(1) , 141-161.
Unkelbach, C. (2013). Social Psychology-Change and Consistency. Social Psychology, 44(1), 1-3.