Blogs on Project-Based Learning

Project-Based Learning

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Get tips and advice for teaching core subject matter with meaningful activities that examine complex, real-world issues.

Suzie BossDecember 18, 2012

Previously in this series on going deeper with project-based learning, we've explored the importance of teacher reflection in teacher reflection in PBL, considered how to plan interdisciplinary projects, and talked about technology integration strategies. All offer practical ways to extend the benefits of PBL.

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Andrew MillerDecember 12, 2012

In my last post about taking PBL projects up a notch, I focused on integration of subject matters and disciplines. Fittingly, this post focuses on integrating technology. Teachers often adjust and improve projects by finding new and innovative ways to infuse technology into the PBL process and products. However, it's not about more technology tools, but about the intentional use of the tools available.

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Andrew MillerNovember 29, 2012

This series is about taking your PBL projects "up a notch." I wrote a blog about how to get started, but after you get started and are familiar with the benefits of keeping it small and focused, what are some of your next steps? One area where I see teachers taking their PBL projects up a notch is through integration. However, integration is actually quite complicated and includes many levels of implementation. Here are some tips to consider for integrating content areas into your next PBL project.

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Suzie BossNovember 28, 2012

Student reflection is a key ingredient in project-based learning, and for good reason. As John Dewey reminded us nearly a century ago, "We do not learn from experience . . . we learn from reflecting on experience."

Reflection not only makes learning stick at the end of a project but also helps students think about what's working well and what's not during PBL. When students take time to reflect on their progress, they can make revisions or course corrections so that they can achieve better results. (For a look at student reflection strategies, read High Tech Reflection Strategies Make Learning Stick.)

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Andrew MillerNovember 13, 2012

As you can see from the photo above, I got to politically "geek-out" on Election Night 2012. National Public Radio had put out an all-call for bloggers and other social media gurus to take part in #NPRMeetup. At this meetup, not only were we able to get up-to-the-minute developments on election results, but we were also behind the scenes at NPR Studios. The #NPRMeetup Team was comprised of a variety of individuals and political perspectives, all with their own objectives. My objective was to learn about the process and use these ideas to share with the education community in hopes that teachers might create classroom experiences that connected.

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Suzie BossOctober 25, 2012

With election season entering the final stretch, political discussions are at a fever pitch. Attack ads and debate "zingers" may be dominating the news, but they don't tell the whole story when it comes to how voters -- and future voters -- think and talk about important issues. In classrooms across the country, election-year projects are encouraging students to think more critically about topics ranging from immigration to the economy.

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Jon SchwartzOctober 24, 2012

When I started playing blues songs for my first grade students, I never imagined I was introducing a fantastic launching point for thematic, standards-based teaching. We soon formed The Kids Like Blues Band, and since last March we've used blues songs as a springboard for teaching academic content standards in reading, writing, listening, speech, social studies, technology, and the visual and performing arts. So far we've played at a street fair, for staff and students at the Cal State San Marcos College of Education, and even live on local TV news and KPBS TV. We're a real band, and the students are fully engaged, learning and rocking!

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Kiera ChaseOctober 16, 2012

Not every teacher gets to hear these words: the process of making "this video gave me a better understanding of how teachers teacher, so when I am faced with a math problem that I don't understand I can break it down and teach it to myself." This quote came from a ninth-grade student at the culmination of the Upside Down Academy project.

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Suzie BossOctober 11, 2012

John Seely Brown, renowned scientist, insightful writer, and all-around big thinker, is serious about play. Playful, adventuresome experiences that engage both mind and body are how we learn best, he told a rapt audience at the recent Powerful Learning Practice Live conference in Philadelphia.

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Mark PhillipsOctober 11, 2012

A few months ago, I had a conversation with a highly intelligent colleague who told me that he was thinking of not voting in the presidential election because none of the candidates were "in touch with the coming revolution," represented by the Occupy Wall Street protests. I tried to explain that there were great differences between the candidates on a host of other important issues, to say nothing of the critical nature of Supreme Court appointments over the next four years. But I’m not sure I convinced him.

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