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WHAT WORKS IN EDUCATION The George Lucas Educational Foundation

Project-Based Learning

Project-based learning is a dynamic classroom approach in which students actively explore real-world problems and challenges and acquire a deeper knowledge.

Overview

What is Project-Based Learning?

Project-based learning is a dynamic approach to teaching in which students explore real-world problems and challenges. With this type of active and engaged learning, students are inspired to obtain a deeper knowledge of the subjects they're studying. Watch an introduction video.

History

What's the History of PBL?

Confucius and Aristotle were early proponents of learning by doing. Socrates modeled how to learn through questioning, inquiry, and critical thinking -- all strategies that remain very relevant in today's PBL classrooms. Learn more.

Experts

What the Experts Say

"One of the major advantages of project work is that it makes school more like real life." --Sylvia Chard, University of Alberta See what other experts say.

Research

Research: Studies on PBL Success

Did you know PBL students remember learned content for longer periods of time? Did you know PBL students view themselves as better prepared in problem solving and perform better in tasks that emphasize understanding and application of knowledge? Dig deeper.

Discuss

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Browse

blog

Building Parent Support for Project-Based Learning

John Larmer, Editor in Chief at the Buck Institute for Education, presents a strategy for bringing parents on board when students are introduced to project-based learning.

1 1 1,784 views
Constructing Sustainable Houses Develops Collaborative Skills (Is School Enough? Series)
video

Constructing Sustainable Houses Develops Collaborative Skills

Teens in Philadelphia learn how to solve math and engineering problems while working together to build high-efficiency homes designed for disaster relief, as part of an alternative senior year program called the Workshop School.

1 1,574 views
blog

Getting Specific About Student Success

Edutopia blogger Suzie Boss explores how project-based learning and the use of rubrics can increase a school's academic success.

2 1,049 views
blog

Focus on Collaboration to Kick Off New School Year

Blogger Suzie Boss shares steps for assisting secondary students with classroom collaboration.

1 1 5,973 views
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Start the Year with a Project . . . or Wait?

John Larmer, Editor in Chief at the Buck Institute for Education, weighs the pros and cons of starting the school year with a PBL project.

15 2 5,763 views
How Building Robots Captivates Kids' Imaginations (Is School Enough? Series)
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How Making Robots Captivates Kids' Imaginations

Building robots inspires such passion in high school seniors Violet and Kjersti that they've begun mentoring younger robotics teams to teach STEM skills -- and save their school's robotics program.

3 1 6,602 views
blog

From Coverage to "Uncoverage!"

Edutopia blogger Andrew Miller starts the conversation about how effectively teachers may or may not be covering their material - and how PBL can help make it stick.

4 1,469 views

Pages

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Whole-School Project Builds Pride

Blogger Suzie Boss highlights how one school used project-based learning to challenge its students to improve their school site.

11 2 14,042 views
article

A Reading List for Project-Based Learning

Explore these project-based learning resources for educators and parents.

2 13,727 views
article

Kindergartners Explore Through Project Learning

The Auburn Early Education Center immerses young children in self-directed projects.

40 1 13,622 views
Using Today's Technology Tools to Study Yesterday's
video

Using Today's Technology Tools to Study Yesterday's

A fifth-grade field trip from Ferryway School, near Boston, to the nation's oldest ironworks is captured with the latest tech.

66 1 13,518 views
article

Programming Is the New Literacy

Power will soon belong to those who can master a variety of expressive human-machine interactions.

123 1 13,413 views
article

From Trash to Treasure: Reusing Industrial Materials for School Art Projects

Junk becomes classroom jewels for creative recycling educators.

9 13,413 views
blog

5 Tips for Flipping Your PBL Classroom

Edutopia blogger Andrew Miller considers how the project-based learning and flipped classroom models can successfully intersect, offering five tips for engaging students in the project while moving aspects of it outside the classroom walls.

23 5 13,308 views

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