A century ago, John Dewey emphasized the importance of engaging learners in reflection. He believed that our experiences shape us, and when reflective practice is part of the learning, meaning and relevancy is created, initiating further growth and change (Dewey, 1933). Reflection is a key...

Reflection brings learning to life. Reflective practice helps learners find relevancy and meaning in a lesson and make connections between educational experiences and real life situations, increases insight, and creates pathways to future learning....

The art of teaching and group facilitation requires a careful balance of challenge, observation, encouragement, guidance, and the ability to know when to step in to help learners, and when to step back and let them learn through struggling with a problem. Sometimes educators have...

When I work with educators from all backgrounds I often find myself encouraging them to reflect on the idea of a “student centered ” or "participant centered" view of teaching and group facilitation. In this approach an educator/counselor/facilitator thinks of themselves as a "guide" in...

The experiential approach to education and group work is based on the idea that change and growth take place when people are actively (physically, socially, intellectually, emotionally) involved in their learning rather than just being receivers of information. The philosophy of experiential education was promoted...

This is the second post in a series that offers ideas for actively involving learners from the first moment they enter the room for a workshop, training or classroom lesson. In my last post I shared information put forward by neuroscientists promoting the idea that...

“The beginning is the most important part of the work”. -Plato   Starting Off with Style: The events or activities experienced the first time learners are exposed to information greatly impact their ability to retain the information. John Medina (2008), author of Brain Rules states: “If you are...

Promoting new ways to engage groups in reflective practice has been a personal passion and focus of my work as an educator. From the beginning of my career as an education and clinician in therapeutic and educational settings I noticed that both facilitators and participants...

Can a Lecture Be Experientiall? While in graduate school, I had an interesting conversation with Dr. Jasper Hunt my professor at Minnesota State University, Mankato. We were filling out conference proposal forms for an experiential education conference. He commented about the "check box" on the application...

"A teacher is one who makes himself progressively unnecessary" - Thomas Curruthers Last week I was inspired by some recent discussions with educators and counselors about educational philosophy and dug into the blog archives with a post on "What is Experiential Education". Today I am adding...

If you are reading this post, chances are you believe it is important to find ways to actively engage learners in your classroom, boardroom, or group counseling setting.  However, when we have a lot of material to cover in our lesson plans or agendas some...