Supporting the most effective mechanisms for

experiential learning

Applying knowledge and conceptual understanding to

real-world problems and situations toward innovative solutions

In a knowledge-building classroom, students approach problems from an interdisciplinary perspective

with the teacher facilitating their inquiries.  Whether a broad subject like water and its applications to a

more narrow subject like healthy living in a large urban area, students engage in collaborative learning

and an exchange of ideas toward solving problems through deep learning and understanding the

subject matter's place in their own lives. This experiential learning process, also referred to as

Phenomenon or Project-Based Learning, serves as the basis for developing skills through practice

and reflection while supporting the construction of new understandings when placed in novel situations.

By engaging in guided, authentic, real-world learning, students deepen their knowledge through a

progressionof knowledge-building principles and methodologies. Teachers are trained as facilitators 

of knowledge rather than dispensers of pre-determined content, and take an interdisciplinary approach

to teaching. Consider the example of studying water as a common topic: 

Tel: +1 (305) 351-6815 


Education Technology


Community of Practice for 

Teachers, Principals & Staff






phenomenon [fi-nom-uh-non, -nuh n] 
a fact, occurrence, or circumstance observed 

or observable

Bundles technology, pedagogical methodologies, teacher training and

assessment tools to transform the K-12 U.S. classroom for:

          Computer-supported Collaborative Learning around topics that

leads to subject mastery;

          21st Century Skills that employers seek, including critical thinking,

collaboration, communication and creativity - the 4Cs of Future Education

          Adherence to standards set forth by UNESCO, OECD and the World

Federation of Associations for Teacher Education to rethink teaching in

21st Century Education

          Formative and summative assessment tools that verify improved

learning outcomes in throughout the K-12 education continuum.



Around Ideas - a source of economic growth in  

The Knowledge Age 

Preparing Today's Students for Tomorrow's Challenges
             With Real-World Problem-Solving Skills 

Project-Based Learning

Project-Based Learning

Project-Based Learning

Networked Classrooms


Knowledge Building in Action - KBIA


A 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization

Contact us:

Project-Based Learning

Creating Capacity for Innovation






Partnering Classrooms Worldwide!

Contact us if you would like to join the

Knowledge Building International Project:

Project-Based Learning

Methodologies  / Toolkit


In small group settings, students exchange ideas regarding the problems they study and formulate theories

on innovative solutions, guided by the teacher for discourse around the issues. Students exchange notes in

the Knowledge Forum, an electronic workspace able to accommodate a limitless number of student

participation at any time, and they create multi-media presentations to demonstrate how they have gained

mastery of the subject being explored.

This experiential learning teaches students the competencies they need for real-world success. They

acquire skills needed for 21st Century education -  critical thinking, collaboration, communication and

creativity in line with those advocated by international organizations such as UNESCO and OECD for

re-imagining education for what is taught and how it is taught. The skills acquired during the knowledge-

building process will carry them through the education continuum and into the workforce. By accessing

authoritative resources that complement their textbooks, which are usually outdated, they enhance the

content needed for the particular course of study, whether it be biology, history, civics, geography or really

any topic they are studying in school.  They watch video presentations through TedTalks, You Tubeand

Vimeo to learn from the experts, and they form important relationships with their peers in other cities and

countries throughout the world when their classrooms and teachers are partnered through the Knowlege

Building in Action Community of Practice. 

This process includes the integration of:
          knowledge—the concepts, facts, and information acquired through formal learning and

          past experience;
          activity—the application of knowledge to a “real world” setting; and
          reflection—the analysis and synthesis of knowledge and activity to create new knowledge

Students apply the scientific method and use scaffolding to progress through the learning experience.

When students are engaged in these types of inquiry of proposing theories, defending those theories and

reworking the theory with input from their classrooms and the research they are doing, they see the

relevance of what they are studying to their own lives. They have increased motivation to learn, practice

and give feedback.

Experiential learning creates self-directed learners. When confronted with unfamiliar situations and tasks

in a real-world context, students need to figure out what they know - and what they do not know and how

to learn it.  This requires a reflection on prior knowledge, deepened through reflection. They can then 

transfer their previous learning to new contexts, master new concepts, principles and skills, and be able to

articulate how they developed this mastery.  Ultimately, these skills create students who become self-directed

life-long learners, being able to apply what they learn to their own lives. 

During the learning process, teachers become facilitators of inquiry rather than dispensers of pre-determined

content. This means that they are not standing in front of the class but rather circulate amongst the small

group learningclusters in the classroom so they can monitor the learning taking place and can answer

questions students may have about the subjectmatter they are studying.  Teachers can pose problems,

set boundaries, provide suitableresource, ensure physical and emotional safety, and facilitate the learning

process. They are able to recognize and encourage spontaneous opportunities for learning, engagement

with challenging situations, experimentation and discovery of solutions and help their students notice the

connections between one context and another as well as between theory and the experience.

Knowledge Building in Action can facilitate any school wanting to implement experiential learning in

their K-12 classrooms. This includes training on the Knowledge Forum and partnering teachers in different

cities. Contact us in the United States at +1 (305) 351-6815, Email: