You don’t have to go to school to learn

In my first year at WWU, my education teacher said to my “This is the most creative final project I have ever seen.” My project was a paper that talked about my experiences teaching karate. Why, I wondered, it was only a paper, didn’t 80% of his students write papers? He told me that it did’t matter that it was a paper, it was the first time anyone had ever written about *teaching experience.* That was when I realized that very few freshmen in college had ever done any teaching before.

Students who chose to go into any subject matter rarely have hands-on experience in that subject. Potential biology majors have never done any field work, psychology majors have never done any counseling, pre-law students have never been to court, and education majors have never taught. In some of these cases, a small amount of experience is obtained during their studies, but for many of them, no experience at all will be had until they join the work force, or possibly go to grad school.

So why are so many students deciding to go into subjects that have no real experience in? Why are students forced to make a decision before they have hands-on experience in the area of interest? Why do we sit around in classroom talking about doing things, but never actually doing them? Why is school so detached from real experience?

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