Recently, I had to attend an orientation for my daughter’s upcoming sixth grade environmental camp session. (Stick with me, I have a point.) While there, the presenter from the camp discussed their goal is to focus on “experiential learning” as a way to develop the students creative and critical thinking skills. She said the exercises are designed to get the kids to achieve more than they thought they were capable of by showing them how to work together to use their collective knowledge to find solutions. She also said it would get them to push past their fears of failure and give them a safe environment to use trial-and-error as a way to get results. And then she ended by telling us her favorite quote related to the power of experiential learning:
Your life begins at the end of your comfort zone.As soon as I heard it, I thought of all the job seekers out there who are slowly dying inside. Who are becoming more fearful with every passing day that they will never find work. Meanwhile, they are retreating further and further into themselves, just trying to stay comfortable and to minimize the pain... the exact opposite of what they should be doing.