When designing educational experience for purpose of experiential learning method, it is important to consider not only the level of educational experience but also the standard of quality for the experience and learner’s ability to respond. When matching experiences with content, one must establish the range of experientiality for the unit to facilitate the process, Gibbon (1980:2) has adopted this aspect of decision making to the following hierarchy of experiences:

1.         Receptive Mode:     Experiences or representation of them are presented to learners who remain passive audience throughout. This can be sub-divided into (a) simulated experience and (b) spectator experience.
2.         Analytical Mode:    Learners conduct field studies in which they apply theoretical knowledge and skill in order to study some event or some aspect of the environment, or solve some practical problems. This is subdivided into (a) exploratory and analytical experience.
3.         Productive Experience:     Learners generate products, activities and solve problems that are either assigned or are of their own devising. This can be divided into (a) generative and challenge experiences.
(4)       Development Mode: Learners Pursue excellence in a particular area such as designing and implementing long-term programes of study. These is divided into competence experience and mastery experience.
(5)       Psychological Mode: Learners learn to understand themselves and their relationship with others. They accomplish the task presented at the stage of development towards maturity and make contributions in terms of others. This can be grouped into personal growth experience and social growth experience.

It is good to note that experiences must reflect the interest and expertise of the learners. It should also present a range of activities that reflect the level at which the content is to be addressed, the interest and abilities of learners and the environment which the learning will take place.
            The elements of experience refer to the things that make the experience to happen. These include the nature of activities selected, the skills to be applied through the activities and the way in which the activities are facilitated.

Principles of Analogy or Assimilation:  One of the basic laws of learning which is in conformity with the principles of experiential learning is the principle of analogy or assimilation. The principle states that when individual is faced with a new situation for which he has no natural or learned response, the response he makes will resemble an earlier response to a similar situation (Chauhan; 1978). The implication of this is that there is a similarity between every new and old experience of a learner, and as such, educators should always lead learners from their known to their unknown. Textbooks, abstractions, and illustrations should always be brought to reflect concrete life for learners; secondly teachers must provide identity between historical event and present day event. This principle is in agreement with the use of unit approach in pedagogy. In unit approach, individual learner makes decisions, grows and develops democratic point of view ((Nwachukwu 1989) (Chauhan 1987). The above principle is in conformity with experiential teaching method because in experiential teaching approach individuals are actively engaged in series of relevant activities using concrete or authentic materials. They make decisions and draw their conclusions based on the activities undertaken. Hence educators who want to adopt experiential learning approach need to understand this principle.

Principle of Mental Set:    Another basic law of learning which supports the use of experiential teaching method is the principle of mental set. This principle talks about the pre-disposition to act in a particular way. It is the temporary condition of one’s attitudes, feelings and interests. Its view is similar to Kurt Lewin’s Gestalt field theory of cognitive learning. The principle states that for learning to occur, teachers must prepare learners for various activities in advance(Chauhan 1987, Nwachukwu 1989) Educators can encourage learners to source learning materials (teaching aids) from homes, community or school. In fact, the hallmark of experiential teaching approach is the involvement of learners in sourcing of teaching aids from their various homes. This helps to increase learners’ level of participation, and prepares their mind for the class activities which the teaching aids will be used for. The teaching aids must be meaningful and real. The environment must not be threatening but rather congenial. Learners must be encouraged to feel that they have control over future activities. Teachers should develop in pupils positive attitudes.

Retention of Learning:      The purpose of education is to impart knowledge to learners. The knowledge thus imparted is only useful if learners are able to retain them for use in school, outside school and in future life. Presently the greatest tragedy to the education system at all levels in Nigeria is that learners hardly retain what has been taught in school beyond the period of examination. Educators have the onerous task of adopting or devising a pedagogical approach that will enable learners to acquire, retain and transfer knowledge transmitted in school to the wider society for use in dealing with every day problems. (Nwachukwu: 1989)
            This discussion will border on factors that enhance retention and those that lead to forgetting. The discussion will examine how experiential learning will assist in elimination of facts that are responsible for low retention of knowledge acquired by pupils in schools especially in basic science.
            Oladele (1987:103) had identified the following kinds of remembering:
(a)       Recognition: This includes the recognition of the faces of people, painting, musical composition; pattern of physical arrangement which have previously registered on one’s sensory receptors.  
(b)       Recall: Restatement of something learnt in the past. We recall something even when it is not seen but was presented to the senses in the past.
(c)       Reproduction: One recognizes a basic scientific law so well, because it was learnt very well.
(d)       Performance: Habits learned or skills acquired are performed by an individual because it was properly learned or acquired.
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