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Aspiring Teacher / MIT Grad Student

Great post, John!! As a

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Great post, John!!

As a future educator, I would like to incorporate PBL into my classroom. Knowing exactly when the right time to introduce this type of learning is "depends". This blog article was a great resource for me because it gave a great timeline on how to introduce it into the class and with the students and what skills that must be taught first in order for the PBL to be successful.

Thank you for educating me!!

Editor in Chief at the Buck Institute for Education

Thanks SGP! Glad you found

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Thanks SGP!
Glad you found this useful - check out our book (PBL for 21st Century Success) too for more info. If you'd like to email me I'd love to hear more about your school - johnlarmer@bie.org.

Your blog hit on so many

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Your blog hit on so many things that I needed to hear in plain English with samples to help me see the connection to my classroom. You hear people talking the 4C talk but you walk the 4C walk. I have been struggling with how to start this process in my classroom and to be honest, have been putting it on the back burner as I have been feeling overwhelmed with all the other changes in my school this year. The community issues for innovation is great. I teach students that are old enough to affect change in their communities. What a great idea, finding out a need where they live and helping them find a way to act on that need that inspires them personally while they learn content. I also like the alternative ideas as I work in a content team that is trying to incorporate CCSS into our curriculum more regularly. We all do project based learning and the idea of scaffolding the 4C's throughout the year bring them all together at the end is something I can really see my colleagues buying into. Your last thought is something I keep reminding myself and fellow teachers of, "let them struggle, the best lessons in life are the ones we work for."

Editor in Chief at the Buck Institute for Education

Hi Wendi, Glad you found this

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Hi Wendi, Glad you found this useful! One more tip - actually a pretty big piece of advice - would be to make sure their first project is REALLY engaging. Pick a topic - or involve students in picking a topic - that will grab their hearts and minds. Then they'll see that they like learning that way, and there will be no going back!

sixth grade teacher Riverside, California

I really enjoyed reading your

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I really enjoyed reading your article. I have wanted to try project based learning, but have been unsure about how to get my students started. The students at my school come from an upper middle class neighborhood, and unfortunately many are not used to critical thinking or stepping outside of the box. The just want to know what procedure and steps they need to do in order to do the assignment the “right” way. I like the ideas you provided to lay the foundation for students to learn the skills needed for project based learning. It also makes it seem less daunting. I am definitely going to start out small with mini lessons and activities that will build up to my students being able to handle a full-fledged project based learning opportunity. Thank you for the great ideas and jump starting our adventure.

Great post John. You have

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Great post John. You have presented many great ideas. I also believe that starting the year with a big project will depend on the level that the students are on, but I personally would prefer to wait until I am more familiar with the students before I create groups and assign a major project. These are just my thoughts. Again, thanks for the informative post.

Editor in Chief at the Buck Institute for Education

Thanks Chris - That is indeed

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Thanks Chris - That is indeed a good article from EdWeek. I could see those knds of activities put in a PBL context, and they;d be very useful for forming the first project teams.

Editor in Chief at the Buck Institute for Education

Thanks Slash - what's your

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Thanks Slash - what's your school?

Editor in Chief at the Buck Institute for Education

Interesting point, Rey - can

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Interesting point, Rey - can you say more about how students can "discover" how to do PBL? I think you're right but it may take a very brave / skilled teacher to pull it off without it feeling like it's too time-consuming or "messy" for them to be comfortable. Or maybe the question is, what should we prepare students for and what should we let them discover - and how does a teacher guide that process?

Editor in Chief at the Buck Institute for Education

Hey, thanks Rhonda - What

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Hey, thanks Rhonda - What were some of the ways you explicitly taught PBL skills? and btw, what grade level / subject do you teach?

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