Keys to Success

Use proven models

Use a proven experiential learning model.  Consider using a proven model or method to create opportunities for students, but modify it to fit the needs of your students and community. Your organization can learn from the best  practices and experiences of exemplar programs  in Georgia and across the United States

Stack learning experiences

Stack the learning experiences. Experiential learning opportunities should build upon more than one year, bringing together what students learned in prior years with current learning.

Organize well

The organizational structure is key to long-term success. Ensure that an organizational support structure is in place to help manage experiential learning opportunities at the school and at the business. This helps prevent duplication of effort (e.g., more than one school/teacher calling on one particular business/industry) and assists in other associated tasks, such as arranging transportation.

Involve business partners

Business partners must be at the table. Businesses must see how their involvement fits with their talent development needs and community investment strategies.

Identify a champion

Identify an experiential learning champion. Have a champion who is passionate and committed to experiential learning. This could be one or more individuals (teachers, school board members, school district employees, etc.) or a business leader. The organization must provide adequate resources and support for long term success.

Don't overextend yourself

Match your experiential learning opportunities with your organization’s capacity. For example, you may want to start with short-term experiences (e.g., school-related experiences) for several years before starting to tackle something larger and more involved, like internships or apprenticeships.

Define your goals

Define the goals of your experiential learning program to determine what to invest in. Your organization’s overall talent and outreach strategy will guide what programs and experiences you invest in.

Create experiences

Create experiences, not just events.  Focus on creating experiences for students instead of events. Experiences have a much deeper impact on student learning and outcomes. Experiential learning should also incorporate a reflection or takeaway session to help stimulate deeper thinking and connect the experience to what is happening in the classroom.