Books, pencils, classmates, teachers and desks. All of these are factors associated with our typical day-to-day school learning environment, but what if we told you that you can learn beyond classroom walls? You might say “Yeah, I knew that already!” but did you know the benefits of learning beyond the classroom and how to do so? This blog will tell you how learning beyond the classroom can be achieved, and why it should be encouraged.
So, let us dive right in!
Why should we learn outside the classroom when we have enough school already?
Students might question why learning outside the classroom is worthwhile. Well, did you know it enhances learning and fosters personal and social development? Students that engage in learning experiences outside of the classroom report having higher levels of motivation, recall the course material more vividly, and have improved academic performance in the class.
Why is learning outside the classroom more active?
Furthermore, learning outside of the classroom is an active process, where students encounter authentic problems, test for real solutions, and interact with others to make sense of the world around them. That is what makes the experience so valuable. When we do this, we encounter the world and are forced to engage multiple perspectives. For example, watching a documentary on pollution at home can encourage students to reflect on better ways to care for the environment such as recycling.
Now that we know why learning outside the classroom is important, how do we actually do it?
We hope that we have convinced you of the benefits of learning outside school by now, and if so, we would love to share some of the ways in which students can do so!
There are many ways to make learning outside the classroom interesting such as:
- Studying abroad
- Technology outside the classroom
- Writing for pleasure
- Youtube Videos
Let’s unpack these tips one by one. This way, students can find the learning style that suits them most!
Experiences in the field can help students to learn outside the classroom. Field experiences early in a student’s career can be formative and can inspire students to pursue a passion or career. They may include:
- visiting a museum for fun
- going to a career expo
- enjoying a weekend at the art gallery
- taking a class on cooking, photography or STEM
A lot of famous people, like Steve Jobs, Bill Gates and Elon Musk, applied what they have learned outside the classroom and invested in this knowledge in their free time. Have you heard the phrase ‘experience is the best teacher’? These famous examples definitely prove that to be the case! So, next time you get that excursion note or invite to go to an educational location, why not give it a go?
2. Studying abroad
A fun overseas trip can also be an amazing learning opportunity. When students think about studying abroad, they might feel nervous, excited, curious or all of the above! Did you know that studying abroad is an incredible way to learn outside the classroom?
Firstly, it exposes students to a new environment where they have to be independent and navigate their way around. This could mean learning how to travel around with public transport in a different country, understanding unknown signs and symbols, finding your way to a new school and more. Students become more independent and learn about the customs and lifestyle required to adapt to a new country and school.
Secondly, students may have the opportunity to learn a new language, or improve in a second language they may already know. This is an incredible life skill as it allows you to interact with people from other parts of the world, makes students more employable in future and is a great attribute to add to a resume. Students also get to learn about how education systems differ abroad. They may also have the opportunity to study new content that they may overwise not be exposed to.
Finally, making new friends and learning about their culture, customs, lifestyle and habits improves people skills and cultural awareness, which are vital for maintaining positive social interactions with a diverse range of people.
If you are a student who is highly considering studying abroad, we encourage you to read more about it through this handy link right here: https://www.internationalstudent.com/study-abroad/guide/ten-benefits-to-studying-abroad/
3. Technology outside the classroom
Technology can be a productive learning experience instead of just a procrastination tool. When thinking about technology, students tend to think of scrolling through instagram or online shopping rather than learning. But, what are some productive ways to use technology to learn outside the classroom?
Educational use of technology may include playing an educational game such as a speed math game. Students could also create PowerPoints on a topic of interest and turn it into a fun activity where they can present them to friends and family. Furthermore, they may find books and podcasts on the internet that interest them and invest their time learning and relaxing simultaneously. Whatever your interest may be, or whatever information you may need, try using technology to expand your knowledge on various topics!
4. Writing for pleasure
It can be fun! It is completely understandable that writing may not be everyone’s cup of tea. However, writing for pleasure can be a way to learn without even realising it. Writing about a topic of interest expands creativity, improves written expression, increases fluency and grammar/ punctuation skills and allows students to gain a personal written voice. Writing for pleasure can come in many different forms, it could range from writing a book or story and publishing it, journaling daily, or even writing posts of social media about topics you love such as animal rights or fashion.
If you are student looking to improve with their writing outside of classroom doors, here are 14 writing styles and how to get better at them: https://jerichowriters.com/writing-styles/
Some students may divert away from watching documentaries are they can be labelled as boring and overly factual. A lot of students may not know this, but documentaries can be far more interesting than you may think. Documentaries are made on so many different topics and are usually widely entertaining. Topics such as animals, natural disasters, mystery, passions such as dancing, celebrities’ stories and more. Whatever your interest may be, we can guarantee that there’s probably a documentary about it, and a good one at that. If you are a student who is also looking to improve in a subject, but finds reading about it too time consuming, finding a documentary on the topic may be a fantastic and time effective alternative.
Here is a list of educational Netflix documentaries that may just blow you away: https://formnutrition.com/inform/12-educational-netflix-documentaries-to-binge-watch-yourself-smarter/
Research can be a great learning tool for outside of school. Sometimes students may be left feeling confused after class and unsure about a topic. Other times, they may just be curious about one or want to revise it for an exam. Researching is a great strategy to learn as it allows students to find the exact information they are looking for, and takes notes on it if this is helpful. Research can mean searching up topics on the internet, or even going to a library and finding books about a topic. Whatever research looks like for you, we promise it is a great way to expand knowledge.
7. Youtube videos
Watching YouTube videos related to the certain subjects can extend your knowledge in an engaging manner. For example, for Maths you can watch videos related to learning shortcuts on how to solve certain equations, or memorising formulas like the ‘SOH CAH TOA’. The best thing about this is, there are all kinds of videos for all kinds of tricky subjects and concepts that you can watch at anytime.
Learning outside the classroom has no limits, especially now with so much technology available at our fingertips. So, do not miss out, and give these tips a try. Learning can be a fun and rewarding experience when it becomes a hobby and lifestyle rather than just an obligation.
It’s what we do
At MWNS, we are known for our mission – “Building Confident Learners inside and outside our classrooms“. We are experts in educating our students and preparing them for life beyond the classroom. We want to ensure all lessons are related to what they are learning at school while ensuring students see the value in their education.
More about Maths Words not Squiggles
At MWNS, we offer primary school tutoring and high school tutoring in Maths and English to ensure students understand their schoolwork, meeting the requirements set out by NESA and achieving grades they are proud of. All our Maths and English tutors tailor their lessons to the individual needs of our students. By working at a pace that suits and benefits each child, we are able to maximise their learning in an enjoyable environment.
Our Maths and English tutoring is available in centre (Central Coast Tutoring, Eastern Suburbs Tutoring, Inner West Tutoring, Northern Beaches Tutoring, South Sydney Tutoring, Sutherland Shire Tutoring) and online. Whether you are looking for a Maths tutor or an English tutor, MWNS is able to help build your child’s confidence.