I was involved in running an outdoor experiential learning activity recently in an Executive Education event.Â Â Â Interesting insights â€“ First, it actually can be run in a way that works for certain learning objectives.Â Â Second, I possibly â€˜contributedâ€™ to the limitation of such learning approach.
Learning Objectives â€“ The event was about to learn about group dynamics and own unconsciousness.Â Â So, the outdoor activity was meant to be stretching in order to surface the dynamics and assumptions.Â Â Â Instead of aiming for nice-nice feeling of accomplishing a task, the participants will experiment frustration and failure.Â Â In fact, the underlying thought is that the more struck the group experiences, the more the participants can learn.Â Â Unlike project work, the outdoor can add a dimension of physical memory e.g. muscle fatigue to reinforce the learning retention.
Given the intensity mentioned above, we spend a lot of time in advance to contract with the participants.Â Â We also a distance in order not to â€˜colludeâ€™ with them e.g. making the activity easier which the coaches / consultants can unconsciously do so.Â Â [I can elaborate more on the â€˜howâ€™ laterâ€™]
My â€˜Contributionâ€™ â€“ This is probably deeper realisation.Â Â I feared that the participants will not be serious about outdoor.Â Â It may be the case, but I had such fear because I was not serious about outdoor.Â Â I alienated outdoor possibly because unconsciously I did not want to experience the physical challenge and failure.Â Â I projected such unconscious excuse to the participants.Â Â It is already relieving and amazing to hold this hypothesis.