The idea behind place-based education is simple yet compelling: It uses the environment around you, and even the entire world, to learn. While place-based education may seem like a new concept, the idea of incorporating local issues and knowledge into an educational curriculum was the way children learned before formal schools were created. Most children were taught by their families and by the people in their communities, not from a teacher in a classroom.
This kind of learning can be performed at any time and in any location — in fact, sometimes it’s referred to as “anytime, anywhere learning.” The ubiquitous availability of Internet connections gives learners access to information from nearly anywhere, but it’s not only the aspect of taking the class out of the classroom that has such an impact. Hands-on, or experiential learning can offer students a more comprehensive approach than the traditional classroom approach.
One of the compelling aspects of place-based learning is that it helps students develop connections to their communities as well as to the world around them in a way they might not in a traditional classroom. Instead of simply learning concepts and rules, the student uses them in real-world situations. For more on the power of Place-Based Learning, continue reading!