Our Project

The Educational component of Experiential Education

 “Each day that we live, we’re taking in new information, ideas, concepts, experiences, and sensations. We need to consciously stand guard at the doors of our minds to make sure that whatever we’re allowing to enter will cause our lives to be enriched, that the experiences we pursue will add to our stockpile of possibility.” ~ Anthony Robbins, Awaken the Giant Within

The Power of Experiential Education by Janet Eyler

“Experiential education, which takes students into the community, helps students both to bridge classroom study and life in the world and to transform inert knowledge into knowledge-in-use. It rests on theories of experiential learning, a process whereby the learner interacts with the world and integrates new learning into old constructs.”

The ‘Jesus Method’ as a teacher

Jesus provided us a teaching model based on experiential learning which was gathering a small group of individuals into teaching sessions through life experiences.  The “Jesus Method” incorporates four general points about Jesus’ moral teaching.

The first is that it is aimed at achieving a transformation of moral character; without changing certain traits and attitudes that impede moral responsiveness, moral teaching remains merely exhortative.

Second, moral teaching cannot be moralizing; it must begin with an understanding of moral agency and motivation, and sometimes the way to influence these is not through direct moral instruction, but through other kinds of teaching.

Third, many deep moral insights are gained only indirectly, through reflection on complex and puzzling cases that do not yield simple truths or directives.

Hence, fourth, Jesus’ use of proverbs, allegories, paradoxes, parables and other figurative forms reflects, on the positive side, a desire to cultivate in listeners a breadth and flexibility of moral imagination – and, on the negative side, a willingness to see many listeners misunderstand or not understand at all.

-Nicholas C. Burbules, “Jesus as a teacher.” Spirituality and Ethics in Education: Philosophical, Theological, and Cultural Perspectives, Hanan Alexander, ed. (Brighton: Sussex Academic Press) 2017.

Making a Difference in Our Community


Photograph: Chuck Crow, The Plain Dealer

Each year’s Cleveland Life Institute students will engage in addressing a community issue in partnership with the ongoing work of other programs and governmental agencies.

Our Community Project  (2017-18 ) will be to evaluate and make recommendations for action regarding the problem of abandoned homes and properties in the city of Cleveland. 

Vacant houses, blighted buildings still plague Cleveland, but problem is shrinking: Taking Stock by Michelle Jarboe, The Plain Dealer

How Cleveland’s Vacant Homes Violent Crimes and Lead Poisoning are Linked – CWRU Report by Rachel Dissell, The Plain Dealer

We are in partnership with the City of Cleveland, the Cuyahoga Land Bank, and Western Reserve Land Conservancy to create a network in the faith based community to help in the revitalization of neighborhoods through a project which our students will engage themselves.

This provides a learning environment that represents the opportunity of each class to work though a project over the course of a year to a point of completion. Students will work together along with faculty advisors and community leaders to utilize our faith based community in the process of rebuilding neighborhoods. The exact nature of our role will be presented the the beginning of the school year.

Management abilities, leadership skill, and teamwork projects will provide a learning experience that will find value in our students personal or professional life. 

Few programs incorporate the level of experiential education as we provide. This will be a strong point of our program and a strong addition to our students resume.

Partners

Partnership Community (2017) Abandoned Houses City of Cleveland
Issue:  
Crime/Housing/ Taxes/ Economic development/Jobs/
Quality of living/ Strategic planning

 City of Cleveland
City of Cleveland Ohio
City of Cleveland
Department of Building and Housing 
Ronald O’Leary, Director
601 Lakeside Ave. Room 510
Cleveland, Ohio 44114