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On its own, travel is a powerful tool for teaching, but also its own brand of education. The exposure to new places, new things, and new people provide lessons that cannot be taught in a classroom or in familiar surroundings. Here are 5 reasons why travel is important for students.
First-hand experience is an irreplaceable asset when teaching a subject. Texts and lesson plans are bolstered by relevant hands-on experiences. History comes to life when you walk the halls of a museum, math gains real-world relevance when you see what it takes for a spaceship to break through Earth's atmosphere, the words "We the people..." gain real weight in Washington, D.C.
An unstructured and unfamiliar learning environment provides an opportunity for the students to see a subject from different angles and learn on their own terms, with lessons in the classroom as a foundation for their understanding.
The benefit of traveling for students extends beyond education, and into a lifetime's worth of increased potential. The U.S. Travel Association conducted a study that showed students who took field trips as part of their primary education had higher grades, higher high school graduation rates, higher university attendance, and higher annual income as adults.
Adults who traveled as children (from the same study) reported feeling more connected to American heritage, open to other viewpoints than their own, and "More tolerant".
"Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts. Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired vegetating in one little corner of the Earth all one's lifetime." -Mark Twain
For many children, the opportunity to travel in any capacity may only come from the education system. Coming from a disadvantaged family or a dysfunctional household can often make it difficult for a child to see beyond their hometown or even their neighborhood, and obscure the future. The opportunity provided by student travel is invaluable to students who may otherwise not experience anything beyond the classroom or their daily routine.
Beyond benefiting the disadvantaged, travel can push students from all backgrounds outside their comfort zones or give them their first real taste of independence.
Travel is Inspiring
The focused exposure of students to new concepts through educational field trips can fuel existing interests and even spark new ones! Meeting a professional in a field of interest for a student may be the jump start they need for considering themselves as eligible for greatness. Giving a child a goal to strive for is one thing, but when they can actually see what the results of hard work and dedication can bring, then they are driven from within. Museums, science centers, historical sites, zoos, parks, cities, etc... all offer real-world context for what students are learning in the classroom, and what is possible if they educate themselves.
Experiencing new things together is one of the easiest ways to build bonds between your students. Traveling accompanied with group projects and team-building exercises can turn classmates into friends. Healthy relationships, cooperation, and handling new situations as a group are all powerful assets for students preparing for higher education and the workforce.
You Name it Tours is a Group Travel Planner for Students and Specialty Groups. For a free quote contact us 888-257-4099 or email us