Take a Hike

Got a Meeting?: take a walk

I came across this Ted Talk “Got a meeting? Take a walk”by Nilofer Merchant at the most amazing moment right after a hike with a friend (let’s call her sunny). I came home reflecting what a wonderful time I had on the hike and what great conversation I had with Sunny. Some if the best conversations, ideas and realizations have come to me during a hike, bringing me to my thought “why not take a hike in the classroom?” What I mean is, if there is a connection to fresh air, walking and thinking, why shouldn’t learning in the classroom take a hike?
Though I think this is a great idea, and most likely not the first of its kind, I am pondering how to make it effective for students. Obviously taking a group of 20-38 students on a hike would create all sorts of distractions from the topic of discussion, but what about small group conversations? And for that matter, it doesn’t need to be in the wilderness, this could happen in city and suburban areas. The fresh air and physical activity will stimulate critical thinking of the discussion, and the students could draw from their surroundings as well.
This could be an effective tool not just for student learning but for teacher- to -teacher conversations. One-on-one meetings could happen during a walk, and staff meetings could happen on an actual hike. Imagine the creative energy that would flow during this kind of meeting, and how it would strengthen the community of the school and staff. How to make this a reality in the school community I will be a part of as a future educator will be on my “to do” list.