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Teachers comment on the value of extending learning beyond the classroom

Wednesday December 4, 2013

Even with over 30 years’ experience in the educational travel sector, at WST we realise that teachers still know best when it comes to deciding what a school trip should deliver for their pupils, and regularly speak to individuals to understand the educational community’s priorities.

This week we spoke to Andrea Taylor, Head of History at South Bromsgrove High School, who confirmed what we have heard from countless teachers over the years: learning outside the classroom matters.

“Speaking from a history teacher’s point of view it’s about experiencing the subject outside of the classroom, so really sort of engaging with the subject in a very different way,” explains Andrea, sharing what she has learnt from supervising school trips over the years.

Andrea suggests travel can add an extra dimension to education, helping students to connect with a subject and better comprehend the context behind historical events.

“They’re used to doing all the reading and writing and I suppose sort of getting things in abstract,” relates the South Bromsgrove High teacher, adding, “We take the group on the battlefields trip for example and to actually see the scale of the cemeteries and things like that, it really just brings everything to life and they get to experience the subject on a different level.”

It is this educational element that Andrea feels must be central to the organisational process when planning a trip, focusing on matching the content of the visit to what pupils learn within lessons.

“The most important thing is that it has a really clear educational purpose and that it actually enriches the curriculum that we teach. I think that’s probably, from my perspective, the most important thing,” confirms Andrea.

WST shares this belief, carefully tailoring each trip to the specific needs of a school to complement classroom activities. By taking care of all the necessary little details, WST takes the stress out of travel for teachers, enabling them to demonstrate to their students what a captivating, enriching experience learning outside of school can be.