Learning Outside the Classroom

Five days a week, seven hours a day, I am confined in a classroom and fed with information regurgitated by teachers. The same setting is quite discouraging, and it does not motivate me to pay attention. However, I was able to escape from the learning cage on the occasional field study trips for AP Environmental Science.

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At Joshua Tree National Park, we got to learn about the geological formation of the area while sitting on the geological formations. This first-hand learning experience was much more interesting than watching videos about some far-off place or sitting through PowerPoint presentations. After learning from the teacher was finished, we were set loose to explore the area on our own. I bouldered for the first time, and I learned how to estimate the distance between boulders and how to climb smooth and steep rocks, lessons I would not have learned in a classroom setting. Like Frankenstein’s creature, I learn the most when I am exposed to the outside world and not confined to one specific area (for Frankenstine’s creature, it was the first forest it stayed in).

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In these past four years at a public high school, I have found field trips to be extremely rare. Budget cuts on education has limited school funding on the “extra stuff,” but if a school’s best interest is to help expand a student’s knowledge, it should continue funding for education beyond the restrictions of a classroom.

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2 thoughts on “Learning Outside the Classroom”

    1. Yes, I still remember my first field trip in the US at the Discovery Center over ten years ago! There were all kinds of unique science instruments like the string-less harp, and thanks to the trip, I learned about sound waves and vibrations.

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