Educational travel is often thought as frivolous and expendable, but those who profess to be true educators understand the value of travelling to a student. Here are some of the more important reasons why such trips are such an essential part of a young student’s holistic education.
Augment Traditional Classroom Lectures
It is one thing to read about the historical value of a piece of tapestry or the beauty of a geographical landmark, and a completely different thing to actually witness these marvels first-hand through educational travel. This hands-on experience of various objects of learning can breathe life to the oftentimes bookish and theoretical discussions in the classroom. Observing the day-to-day affairs of manufacturing plants and visiting art galleries that flow with creative inspiration provides the perfect backdrop for students to match classroom lessons to their historical reality. These trips may even allow students to engage in their lessons with more zeal once they’ve seen how they matter in real life.
Appreciate Different Cultures and Heritages
One of the most important benefits of travelling abroad is the exposure to things that are different and alien to the students. The global reach of the Internet does not have the same heft as hearing someone else speak in an accent or even a language the students don’t understand. Going on these trips broadens the horizons of the students and gives them first-hand lessons on how to understand things that are different. This is an important first step in disrupting the idea of ‘otherness’ that often produces a hostile, intolerant and bigoted attitude towards those who are not like themselves.
Instil a Sense of Wonder and Amazement
There is a distinct sense of cynicism creeping into the attitudes of today’s youth. The drive to perform and focus on one’s professional capabilities often overshadows the drive for curiosity and simple appreciation for the things around them. Educational travel helps solve that by directly affecting the senses of the students – letting them see, smell, touch, feel and even taste something that can rekindle that spirit of curiosity that is often stifled before it has a chance to grow. The best part is that this simple flicker of curiosity could be enough to mould an adult who pursues interests that keep him or her happy in the long run.
Allow Teachers to Better Understand Their Students
Educational travel can be a powerful tool for teachers to learn how their students view and deal with the world around them. The quiet wallflower in the class could find her eyes glittering in wonder during a visit to a science museum; or the defiant rascal of the class may stand and stare in awe at art pieces he connects with. An observant teacher will be able to pick out little things that would have otherwise been overlooked in the repetitive routine of the classroom setting.