Implementing service-learning projects for high school students is so important on so many levels. As an experiential educator, I have found service-learning to be experiential by nature, as students get involved in real-world, community-based issues that are personally relevant, meaningful, or interesting to every student.
The learning experience is even more profound when it is self-directed; when students choose their own topics or issues that impact their local communities, examine community needs associated with the topic or issue, brainstorm ways that they themselves can serve to fill the need, and coordinate and execute those service experiences.
This time of year can get a little crazy, but the energy that leads up to this string of holidays and the impending break can be a good thing if channeled in the right way. I engage students in experiential learning activities for the holidays that are fitting for the time of year.
Yes, this time of year can be a little chaotic, but it is also one of my favorite times of year in my high school classroom and home learning environment with my own children
Experiential learning is a fantastic way to engage classroom and homeschool students in fun, personalized, and self-directed learning experiences. But how can you afford it? Is it possible to make hands-on learning where students are actively involved in every experience budget-friendly?
The answer is yes! In fact, I would argue that if you're working on a tight budget, experiential learning is the way to go. There are many strategies that I use to get cheap or free learning materials for experiential learning.
All kids are different. We know this. This is the foundation of experiential teaching. Experiential learning is also a process that doesn't always lead to black and white outcomes, wrong or right answers. Yet it is still common practice to evaluate all students as if they are the same.
How do we evaluate experiential learning then? How do we assess learning outcomes when those desired outcomes vary so widely among students? What are some ways to assess students or evaluate learning outcomes in a way that is personalized, isn't one size fits all, doesn't necessarily test for right or wrong answers, and measures growth and skill development in addition to content knowledge?
What are my thoughts on required state standards in education? Or national standards or any standards? I think I get this question as much as I do because of my experiential philosophy. How can a teacher like myself facilitate experiential learning experiences and teach to the state standards in education at the same time?
Experiential learning and reflection go hand-in-hand. Reflection is an important characteristic of experiential learning, so as an educator with an experiential learning classroom philosophy, I make it a point to enhance learning by reflection.
I add a reflection piece to almost every learning experience that my students have, within AND beyond the walls of the classroom. Reflecting on the process, the outcomes, the content, the goals, and the skills-acquired from the experience really drive the learning experience home.
Welcome to the beginning of my experiential learning blog series specifically on examples of experiential learning activities. I have been writing about the topic of experiential learning for over a month and have covered experiential learning importance, how to set up your classroom for experiential learning, and have even offered examples of experiential learning methods.
What I haven't done is offer you specific examples of experiential learning activities at play. For the next few weeks I will be laying out and showing you experiential learning activities in action.
In the world of experiential learning there is a lot of talk about theory and philosophy; about what experiential learning is and what it is not, the benefits of experiential learning, and the purpose of it.
But the most common question that I get from educators is not about experiential learning in theory but about experiential learning in practice.
How do I practice experiential learning with my k12 students? What is an experiential learning activity? What are experiential learning activity types? What approach or experiential learning activity is the best fit for me and my students? How do I facilitate experiential learning in my classroom and beyond?
These are the questions that this blog post is going to get at. This post is all about my favorite experiential learning activities.
Are worksheets good or bad? That is the question.
For those of you that follow my blog closely you have probably formulated a guess as to my answer to this question. I'm going to start by saying that I don't think worksheets are "bad". I believe that they have a place in this world, but in very very very very very small doses. There are ample alternatives to worksheets, and I hope you'll consider them.
Every season is prime time for experiential learning, but fall is one of my favorite times of year for experiential learning activities. Fall is unique in so many ways. The weather begins to change, wildlife prepares for winter, many farmers harvest their crops, seasonal illnesses begin to creep in (not my favorite), kids gear up for winter sports, fall flavors make a brief appearance, and the holiday season comes on strong.
To provide innovative educational resources for educators, parents, and students, that go beyond lecture and worksheets.
Sara Segar, experiential life-science educator and advisor, curriculum writer, and mother of two.