Understanding Experiential Learning
Do we travel only for a few well-known reasons?
- Beating the stress out
- Enjoying nature and Scenic Beauty
- Spending time with our friends or family
- Visiting the locations most talked about
Over here, let us focus on an unmentioned reason to travel…………….
It may sound boring as to what learning has to do with Travel because we just want to forget our busy schedules.
We want to break free of the routines of life where no one bothers us and we are away from the world but very much with ourselves.
But let us not forget that with each step, there is an associated Experience which enhances the joy of our visit. As these experiences are the precursors of learning, thus emerges the concept of EXPERIENTIAL LEARNING.
Experiential learning, as name suggests, means learning through experiences.
Cases Under Consideration
Ever wondered why schools and universities are getting more into Outbound Learning Programs?
Why are Employees taken to Scenic Destinations for their performance reviews / celebrations?
Why do Organizations carry out their yearly retreats at chosen locations?
First, the spirits get a boost at a New & Unexplored Location.
Then, roles and responsibilities are assigned.
Finally, competition and collaboration go hand in hand.
Appreciation & Recognition come into play and make it a memorable experience!
At this point, you must be happy to recall some related experience, mustn’t you?
Agreed that Learning can come from anywhere – Books, Seminars, Lectures, Debates, Videos, Presentations etc,
But there is always a challenge to acquire the best!
How can that be made possible?
The keyword to not miss over here is ‘Connectivity’
Enhanced connectivity helps us to retain more and recall too!
How does Connectivity work?
Whenever we travel, we explore new things, move into unknown territories and interact with new faces, get to know new cultures, languages and experiences which we recall in the years to come. (For those who travel, these things will sound familiar)
How does the Human Brain receive it?
As we get into the exploration mode, our brain senses a challenge and gets ready to grasp more information, process & memorize and ultimately become a better problem solver.
Having said all this, let me ask you a very simple question:
“What do you remember more easily – the Things you are TAUGHT or the Things that you DO?”
The Things taught have a limited lifespan whereas experiences (experiential learning) last for a lifetime.
Doing something involves our intellect and emotions as well. We do understand that problem-solvers are born when they are exposed to a problem or an unfavourable situation. Thus, practical learning wins over theoretical learning. That’s why, experiential learning plays a vital role in one’s life.
As we are close to nature, we get the stimulus to use all our senses to retain it the best! The more opportunities we get to dive into new experiences, the more we learn.
The best thing in this bargain is that we are not judged or corrected by anyone; we are our own coach, we are the facilitator and guide as well.
In other words, we are learning from our mistakes and thus do not really require any parenting when we are seeking to learn.
Experiential Learning & Leadership
The theory of Leadership can be taught in a classroom but it cannot be practiced over there.
Here, we have an application of the same when we are teaching what SITUATIONAL LEADERSHIP is to a group of students.
We assign a task to 10 participants of the group. We can easily identify who is a better leader, more creative, the speed and direction of the group and various parameters including the task itself. Not only is this a test of Leadership Qualities but also the ability to work with others.
Results: A leader is born; strengths and weaknesses are respected. Complementing each other is a new habit!
Are Virtual Classrooms a threat for Traveling & Experiential learning?
As mentioned earlier, traveling to a new place takes our mind to a different platform. Our mental faculties open up like never before. In such a scenario, we are not interacting with a person (our facilitator), or our fellow participants, rather we are interacting with the surroundings too.
In fact, humans love traveling because we are social beings. Socializing helps us to interact and learn from each other. Apart from Emotional & Intellectual connections, we establish Social connections too.
India is well known for Tourism! At the same time, it is acquiring the reputation of being the Education hub too!. This way, the concept of Education Tourism is coming up in a big way.
……. Before signing out!
New Picnic Spot and Camp Manali is looking forward to enhancing the Experience of guests and visitors so that they can recall the thrill of the adventure, the blessings of nature and the learnings gained.