As we gain knowledge, the list of teaching methods multiplies. So we can leverage the skills we learn in multiple ways. One such method is learning by doing.
This methodology has been there for a long time and is mighty effective. It can also be described as experiential learning. Learning by doing is the ideology that we can learn more about something when we start doing it. It is a practical-based approach rather than one that relies on theory.
Here are some benefits of learning by doing.
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It Offers Greater Engagement and Is More Memorable
Since experiential learning requires you to be actively involved, it becomes more engaging and memorable. It is far more enjoyable than learning through lectures or through reading books and manuals. You tend to passively absorb the knowledge provided by books and lectures. So, there is a good chance you will not be able to retain the knowledge gained on a long-term basis.
Experiential learning forces you to get into a situation where you need to practice what you are learning. When this happens it becomes easier to remember whatever it is you are learning. You may hire Bill Gates himself to teach you how to use Microsoft Windows, but unless you do it yourself, you will never be able to run an operating system. Being actively involved provides learning experiences that are personalized. This makes learning meaningful and relevant.
Experiential learning also provides opportunities to learn from mistakes and refine your strategies for the future.
It Is Personalized
As mentioned above, experiential learning offers a highly personalized experience. The learning cycle of effort, mistakes, reflection, and refinement is possible only through your emotions. It gives you the realization that you have gained new knowledge and motivates you to seek even more knowledge.
It offers a personal connection that you simply can’t get from watching a lecture or reading a book. Having a personal connection encourages us to maintain our curiosity as learners.
No matter how many Gordon Ramsay videos you watch, you will not become a master chef unless you start cooking yourself. Even if you initially make mistakes, you will try to ensure you don’t repeat them in your next attempt. As you go on with the process, you get better and better, and eventually, you will master the art of cooking.
It Is a Communal Activity
Experiential learning usually involves being out there in the open. Since you are not stuck in your room or glued to your book in a library, this becomes a somewhat communal activity. While you expose yourself to the outside world, you can pick up new things to learn from other people and you may even collaborate with them to achieve your learning objectives.
This allows you to participate in your community. Even if you are not directly interacting with people around you, you are still exposed to the physical environment of your community.
It Is More Integrated Into Our Lives
Experiential learning gets deeply integrated into our lives. In-depth learning only happens when we can apply what we have learned in school or college and if we care about what we have learned.
I learned trigonometry in my math class when I was in school. At the time I was good at it because of my assessments I was forced to practice it regularly. Now I have forgotten most of it. I never wanted to be an architect, so the day I realized I will not be graded on my trigonometry skills was the day the utility of these skills expired for me. There is no purpose for me to retain knowledge on trigonometry.
However, if I were taught how to do my taxes in school, it is something that would have been useful. Being a working professional, I am required to know taxation so I have a reason to retain these skills. Experiential learning will make the application of these skills easy.
Experiential learning encourages you to be actively engaged and forces you to retain the knowledge gained. It is highly effective and will benefit you greatly in the future.
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