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Utah's Foremost Platform for Undergraduate Research Presentation
2015 Abstracts

The Effect Experiential Learning Has on Elementary Students

Logan Carter, Southern Utah University


Many students learn best from hands on activities. I myself have had several experiences that have led to deeper understanding and growth. I have participated in many scientific extra-curricular activities such as the SUU Science and Engineering fair, The International Science and Engineering fair, and NCSSSMST conventions. Throughout all of these I gained a deeper understanding of scientific concepts. To test the hypothesis that learning in elementary school students may be affected positively by experiential learning because it engages them in whole brain learning, I have designed an engaged learning set of activities. I will test these activities on approximately twenty students between the ages of nine and eleven at North Elementary School. I will measure how students respond to a set of experiential learning activities through pre and post-activity assessments. For example, we will learn about parental care in amphibians, specifically Alytes spp. -the midwife toads. Male midwife toads wrap the fertilized eggs on their legg’s and care for them until they hatch. The activity would be to split the students into groups and making one group gives the other group the eggs (balloons on a string) to the other group to simulate caring for them. That group would then race to a finish line with the balloons around their legs, making sure not to break any of the eggs. The students with the most unbroken eggs would be awarded a prize for parental care. Experiential learning is an effective way for students to gain knowledge.