Experiential learning in online 4-H SPIN clubs

How to ensure online experiences make connections to educational opportunities.

In earlier articles, we explored some considerations for online 4-H SPIN clubs and some ideas for choosing topics. It may be helpful look at those articles in addition to reading this content.

Experiential learning expands and connects the educational experiences that participants are having to essential life skills. It’s easy to implement into online 4-H SPIN clubs and is foundational to positive youth development experiences and programs. The Experiential Learning Model includes five specific steps:

  • Experience – youth do an activity.
  • Share – youth describe their experience, often we can use the five sense to elaborate on the experience.
  • Process – youth relate the experience to life skills, goals and/or objectives.
  • Generalize – youth make a connecting between their experience and the world around them, they create relationships, find similarities and differences.
  • Apply – youth apply what they learned throughout the experience to other situations or experiences in their lives; often this is described by using identified life skills.

Be sure to visit Implementing the Experiential Learning Model in 4-H Programming Part 1 - introductionPart 2 - experience or do , Part 3 - reflect: share and process and Part 4 - apply to learn more.

Additionally, using the Experiential Learning Processing Questions from Iowa State University Extension and Outreach can be very helpful to lead conversations when using on online format for clubs. Planning ahead with questions already chosen is the key to successful conversations.

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