Expeditionary Learning

Reinventing academic objectives to make outdoor opportunities a central part of learning is taking the educational world by storm, and rightly so. When students only receive an arbitrary range of learning styles to engage with, many simply don’t give it their all or disengage prematurely. Here at South Valley Academy in Phoenix, AZ, we make outside classroom learning a priority to help all students reach their full potential. Here are three tenets of this relatively new educational model.

Expanding the Bounds of Normal Learning

While the book- and tech-driven advantages of the typical classroom setting have their place, increasing numbers of educators and school professionals are seeing the benefits of learning beyond school walls. Some students give preference to visual or auditory learning, but others do not, and offering the opportunity to learn through their preferred means is pivotal.

Many students who experience learning setbacks in the classroom may find that their natural curiosities and hunger for knowledge open up outdoors. Whether it’s studying geology in rocky hills, the water cycle during spring, or historical events at a local site, the expeditionary learning model delivers significant results.

Emphasis on Discovery and Critical Thinking

Contrary to popular belief, expeditionary learning is a far cry from an obligation-free field trip. Our teachers maintain the same academic and behavioral expectations for students outside the classroom as they do inside. All outdoor learning excursions have adequate staff to handle any disruptions or distractions that occur, and students receive appropriate amounts of time and space to keep themselves on track.

Additionally, we expect all students to stay focused on the subject at hand and complete all educational objectives. From taking notes about soil or plant samples to collecting information for individual assignments, we equip your child with all the materials they need for successful learning.

Supporting the Whole Student

Students need ample opportunity to grow intellectually, emotionally, socially, and physically, and expeditionary learning is one of the best ways to achieve this. Research indicates that students who don’t have the freedom to learn, engage, and grow beyond usual classroom parameters are likelier to face greater difficulties in academic and personal achievements. A strong body supports a strong mind, and our outdoor learning opportunities foster both simultaneously.

Want to learn more about this innovative, holistic approach to education? Feel free to contact us with any questions. We look forward to serving you and your family!

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