a short paper about yourself in a non-formal learning environment (500 words max). You can elaborate on the experience you had for this week, or you might choose to write about a non-formal educational experience that you have had in your personal lif

introduction The word ?education? typically conjures up images of buildings made of brick and concrete, with students sitting in rows or at tables and teachers and professors giving lessons from the front of the room. We tend to equate education with what I would call ?formal? education ? that is, education that occurs within a system for some sort of certificate, diploma, credit, or degree. There is also the powerful and unfortunate stereotype that education is something one engaged with while relatively ?young.? Learning Objectives/Outcomes This section further explores the concepts of education by: Introducing the idea of ?non-formal? education and contrasting the challenges and opportunities that exist in non-formal educational environments. Asking you to have a non-formal educational experience that is somewhat novel. Reflecting on how your learning was different in a non-formal environment. Learning Activities This topic contains one required excursion: We would like you to have an educational experience in a non-formal setting. Your experience should last a total of at least 4 hours (the amount of time you should be spending each week on class activities). You might choose to attend one experience for 4 hours, or multiple experiences totaling 4 hours. You are strongly encouraged to have an experience that is different from something that you might choose to do on your own. The purpose of this activity is for you to have a primarily educational experience, not an entertainment experience (although the two might overlap). One key criterion that you could use to determine if the experience will be educational for you is to ask yourself the following questions: Are my prior knowledge/prior assumptions of a topic likely to be challenged? Do I already possess some expertise around a particular topic? If so, can I use that expertise to analyse my experience critically? Do I have very little knowledge about a topic? If so, am I willing to have an experience that is outside the scope of experiences I would usually have? For example, I have a strong academic background in science. If I chose to go to Science World, I would have to be willing to write a response paper that takes a fresh look (for me, anyways) at my prior knowledge of science education. I might, for example, write about the educational limits of places such as Science World from a place-based learning perspective. On the other hand, I have very little knowledge of dance. If I went to the Celebration of Dance event at Surrey, I would probably want to think about the issues raised in the article about aesthetic education before attending the performance, so that I had an “anchor” from which I could write my response. We have listed some possibilities below for your convenience. Please note that you are not required to spend any money to complete the requirements for this week’s classes, as many of the suggestions below are free. Please also make sure that you thoroughly read up on the experiences that you plan to attend before you go, as it is important to be realistic about the time commitment, cost, what will be required of you (e.g., listening to a lecture? watching an event? participating in a discussion? guiding yourself around an institution? participating physically in an activity?) Some possibilities for you to have an educational experience in a non-traditional setting include, but are not limited to: 1. Attending an experiential education centre or activity, such as: The Beaty Biodiversity Museum (http://www.beatymuseum.ubc.ca/) Science World (http://www.scienceworld.ca/) The Vancouver Aquarium (http://www.vanaqua.org/) 2. Attending a cultural institutions (or an event/performance at a cultural institution), such as: Artsclub (Theatre) (http://www.artsclub.com/) Museum of Anthropology (UBC) (http://moa.ubc.ca/) Shadbolt Centre for the Arts (Burnaby) (http://www.burnaby.ca/Things-To-Do/Arts-and-Heritage/Shadbolt-Centre-for-the-Arts.html) Surrey Art Gallery (http://www.surrey.ca/culture-recreation/1537.aspx) Surrey Art Gallery Tour of Exhibitions (http://www.surrey.ca/culture-recreation/10582.aspx?startDate=Feb-05-2013) Surrey Arts Centre (http://www.surrey.ca/culture-recreation/1680.aspx) The Vancouver Art Gallery (http://www.vanartgallery.bc.ca/) Vancouver Opera (http://www.vancouveropera.ca/) Vancouver Symphony Orchestra (http://www.vancouversymphony.ca/) 3. Attending a public presentation / moderated discussion, such as: Artist Talks (http://www.surrey.ca/culture-recreation/1537.aspx) SFU Philosophers’ Cafe (http://www.sfu.ca/continuing-studies/about/program-units/philosophers-cafe/about-philosophers-cafe.html) 4. Attending/participating in an athletic/sporting event, such as: SFU Athletics events (http://athletics.sfu.ca/) Various introductory classes/workshops (e.g., dance, yoga, etc.) available both at SFU and at various community centres: (http://www.surrey.ca/3464.aspx ) (http://www.burnaby.ca/Things-To-Do/Be-Active-Programs/Leisure-Guide.html)

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