Updated: Nov 22, 2022
By Dr. Tracy Weber via https://www.stempipeline.com/blog/
If experiential education, learning by doing, is scientifically proven to work why isn’t it the preferred teaching and learning method? Creative educators have so much existing knowledge about what students need and wisdom about what practices support holistic growth they just required the right tool to leverage it.
Who Created the Kikori App
Kikori Co-founders, Kendra Bostick, and Bryn Lottig have the answer. These two social entrepreneurs lived the trials of facilitating different learning styles, time constraints, and required/desired outcomes. Kendra worked in inpatient behavioral health hospitals and as a School Social Worker for 8 years, whereas Bryn led outdoor expeditions, facilitated leadership training, and worked as an Adventure Coordinator at a K-8 School. During all of this work, both Kendra and Bryn grew individually through experiential learning practices. They also began to incorporate these practices in their work, and when they did, the changes they saw in students was astounding.
An App with Experiential & Social Emotional Learning Activities
Instead of ignoring the challenges of integrating experiential education in schools, camps, and other youth-focused programs, they created an easy-to-use app featuring hundreds of experiential and social emotional learning activities to improve well-being and meet academic goals – virtually or in-person.
Kendra and Bryn knew, from over 20 combined years in the field, that if they could combine social emotional learning standards, 21st century skills, and teaching standards, the tool they created would have the potential to meet every students’ unique needs. Thus, the birth of Kikori. Kikori is an app for educators that provides them with team building activities that teach academics AND social emotional skills. Through this app, teachers are able to search for the exact activity they need to help their students talk about their feelings and build trust – and they are now offering activities that can be done virtually, outdoors and with physical distancing.
Explore hundreds of activities aligned with SEL standards, 21st Century Skills and UN Sustainable Development Goals
Organize and save favorite activities and custom playlists of activities based on unique classroom needs that can be shared with other educators in your school
Filter for activities based on activity type, outcome, grade level, materials available, energy level and so much more!
Create their own activities based on collaborative planning and content-based needs
Their secret sauce is experiential education – a universal way to help students connect with others, build self-awareness, and gain insight into their special strengths. Experiential education activities help youth build become more mindful, practice reflection, analyze information and then, apply their findings.
The values of Kikori go beyond a useful, fun, and relevant tool, and the construction of the app itself represents experiential education. While Kendra and Bryn both had passion for bringing Kikori to life, they learned through developing Kikori the true importance of teamwork, resilience and coming up with creative solutions. In this way, Kikori is a true testament to the power of experiential education that involves listening to oneself and more importantly to others. As a company, Kikori lives its’ values – beginning each meeting with a team building activity, failing forward, and celebrating the opportunity for growth through challenges. They’re extremely grateful to the founders and giants of the experiential education field who have joined together with them in their efforts by sharing activities and most importantly believed in them. One of their goals is to align with teaching standards and they are always open to finding the best partners to help them further this endeavor.
The mission of Kikori is to democratize experiential education. Communities that have been a part of systemic discrimination typically have more students and more traditional approaches to teaching. Through their social mission, they hope to help educators, facilitators, therapists, and corporate trainers around the globe discover and implement meaningful activities with participants. They believe that forward-thinking educators and facilitators will join together into supportive community, sharing ideas, helping schools and families flourish by providing a platform to discover amazing community organizations. Their vision is for researchers to work together with Kikori to measure the impact of experiential education and help make the world a better place through transforming education.
As women entrepreneurs, the founders and their team of educators and scientists recognize the importance of role models. In a recent interview about their entrepreneurial endeavor, they acknowledged the importance of resilience, drive, supporting others, and passion. There are times in life when you just “can’t not” do something that matters to you. Their hope is Kikori helps others discover their passions and their “can’t not” through experience, play, and connection.