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MIT candidate in WA

I was excited to come across

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I was excited to come across some ideas that applied to the elementary classroom. So many of the examples of PBL reference secondary classrooms.As a future elementary teacher I feel that PBL should be incorporated in the classroom in primary grades as much as the secondary. We cover all subjects ourselves in the classroom so why not use PBL. I remember running a classroom store and banking system in 4th grade and how great it felt to do something that felt so adult like. And even though checks seem to be a thing of the past now, I learned a valuable lesson in writing checks and balancing checkbooks. What a great life skill to learn at a young age!

Thank you! I will be sure to

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Thank you! I will be sure to check out the website. I've been keeping a list of books I've come across in various blog posts and articles that are about PBL, but it's always great to have one recommended.

Editor in Chief at the Buck Institute for Education

The Buck Institute for

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The Buck Institute for Education has a lot of resources for elementary PBL - if you haven't already seen its website check it out! Several videos from K-5 grade levels. Their book, PBL in the Elementary Grades, has step-by-step guidance on planning projects, and many examples.

As an elementary

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As an elementary "teacher-in-training" I am trying to expose myself to as many techniques as possible to make learning interesting and engaging for my (future) students. I am really intrigued by the PBL style of teaching. Thus far in my research I have found many PBL blogs and websites geared toward PBL in a secondary classroom, so when I came across this article I was excited to come across different ways it can be implemented in an elementary classroom. I feel like so many young children are born with a curiosity to learn and explore new things. As students grow older we often find that their curiosity dwindles (or is mis-directed), but if we can implement programs like PBL throughout students educational careers they can learn to grow and harness that curiosity into real and practical life skills.

Instructional Technology Specialist from Missouri

I would also be interested in

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I would also be interested in some "tried and true" projects. Please share!

Kindergarten teacher in Shanghai, China

Project Based Learning in the Kindergarten Classroom

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My teaching partner and I thought that we would try out project based learning in our kindergarten classrooms last year. It was one of our goals to research PBL and implement it, as we understood it, within our class. At our school we have a skills based curriculum which allows for a great amount of flexibility.
I do see project based learning as student centered, however I acknowledge that as ECC teachers we play a greater role in planning and facilitating the project than with older students. In our project based learning, even though we came up with the projects, it remained responsive to student interests.
The culminating projects were terrific for demonstrating students collaborative efforts throughout the project and ownership over project content and mastery of skills. We made sure to celebrate the event with our school community, inviting parents, siblings, and administrators to attend the big event.
My teaching partner and I are looking forward to building on what we started last year. We had parents in our classrooms often and built up very solid relationships with our community. Project based learning in my eyes is the way to go.
As I said, in our projects it was lead by the teacher, and we came up with the projects. If you have any insights into how you make it more student led within a kindergarten classroom, I would be very interested to hear them.

Kindergarten teacher in Shanghai, China

Project Based Learning in the Kindergarten Classroom

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My teaching partner and I thought that we would try out project based learning in our kindergarten classrooms last year. It was one of our goals to research PBL and implement it, as we understood it, within our class. At our school we have a skills based curriculum which allows for a great amount of flexibility.
I do see project based learning as student centered, however I acknowledge that as ECC teachers we play a greater role in planning and facilitating the project than with older students. In our project based learning, even though we came up with the projects, it remained responsive to student interests.
The culminating projects were terrific for demonstrating students collaborative efforts throughout the project and ownership over project content and mastery of skills. We made sure to celebrate the event with our school community, inviting parents, siblings, and administrators to attend the big event.
My teaching partner and I are looking forward to building on what we started last year. We had parents in our classrooms often and built up very solid relationships with our community. Project based learning in my eyes is the way to go.
As I said, in our projects it was lead by the teacher, and we came up with the projects. If you have any insights into how you make it more student led within a kindergarten classroom, I would be very interested to hear them.

First Grade Teacher from Lilburn, Georgia

I am new to learning about

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I am new to learning about PBL. I am very inspired to try to implement a social studies and/or science project for first graders. I really see this being a great way of motivating my students. I think they would benefit from being allowed to be creative, hands-on, and have a real world application. I like the idea of incorporating reading, writing, and math into students' projects. Specifically, I can see myself using fiction and non-fiction texts related to the project topic during my guided reading time. Does anyone have any recommendations for books, articles, and/or websites with more information and/or examples of PBL?

Editor in Chief at the Buck Institute for Education

Election issues projects

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Kelsey, I've heard of high school students doing a similar project, where they analyze state propositions and make presentations to the community. So you're being admirably ambitious for 4th graders! A couple of cautions, though. The issues and proposals are often very complex, even for adult voters. And 4th graders may not care that much, unless they see how the issue is relevant to them. And finally, students' families may have strong opinions about political issues, which can be good or bad in terms of asking children to take a stand - you might find students either simply parroting their parents or going against them, which could land you in hot water.
To be "true PBL" I'd say make sure it has the "Essential Elements" we at BIE describe on our website & in our books.

Secondary Education student in Chicago

A good project is multi-disciplinary

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Jim, I think if your district really wants the middle schools to use PBL, its leaders need to implement a middle-school schedule that allows for team-taught, interdisciplinary courses, in which teachers of different subjects work together to plan, incorporate and assess learning standards as part of the project. Edutopia's profile of King Middle School in Schools That Work (under "Project Learning in ME") provides a great example of fully or mostly integrated PBL at the middle-school level.

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