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Experiential Learning

How It Works

Experiential learning occurs when carefully chosen experiences are supported by reflection, discussion and application.

Experiences are structured to require the learner to take initiative, make decisions, and be accountable for the results. Throughout the experiential learning process, the learner is actively engaged in posing questions, investigating, experimenting, being curious, solving problems, assuming responsibility, being creative and constructing meaning.

Learners are engaged intellectually, emotionally, spiritually and physically. The results of the learning are personal and form the basis for future experience and learning. Relationships are developed and nurtured: learner to self, learner to others and learner to the world at large.

The educator and learner may experience success, failure, adventure, risk-taking, and uncertainty since the outcomes of experience cannot be totally predicted. Opportunities are nurtured for learners and educators to explore and examine their own values.

The educator’s primary roles include selecting suitable experiences, posing problems, setting boundaries, supporting learners, ensuring physical and emotional safety, and facilitating the learning process.

The educator recognizes and encourages spontaneous opportunities for learning.

The design of the learning experience includes the possibility to learn natural consequences, mistakes and successes.