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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

Browse

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.

149 2,019 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.

2 107 1,121 views
blog

Focus on Collaboration to Kick Off New School Year

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

1 360 6,278 views
blog

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.

15 189 5,497 views
How Building Robots Captivates Kids' Imaginations (Is School Enough? Series)
video

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.

3 247 7,400 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.

4 149 1,570 views
blog

Thinking Critically About Social Action Projects

Blogger Suzie Boss outlines ways in which social action projects can increase students' leadership skills.

4 152 3,700 views

Pages

article

What Is Project-Based Learning About?

A description of what teachers can accomplish in the classroom using project-based learning, from our Project-Based Learning Professional Development Guide.

4 5 13,902 views
article

Project-Based Learning Research Review: Best Practices Across Disciplines

What does project-based learning look like in math, science, or economics? On this page you'll find concrete examples of successful projects in specific subjects.

1 151 13,790 views
article

Kindergartners Explore Through Project Learning

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

40 34 13,678 views
article

World Without Walls: Learning Well with Others

How to teach when learning is everywhere.

29 85 13,342 views
article

Google Lit Trips: Bringing Travel Tales to Life

Follow along for a multidimensional literary adventure.

6 27 13,342 views
blog

How to Build a Calendar for Project-Based Learning

The Buck Institute's Andrew Miller shares a couple of useful templates for calendaring a project-based class.

2 278 13,229 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.

23 702 13,117 views

Pages

We Love PBL Pinterest Board

Visit a curated collection of resources on project-based learning -- including tips and tricks for newbies and veterans -- on Edutopia's pinboard on Pinterest.

27 views

Classroom Guide: Top Ten Tips for Assessing Project-Based Learning

This guide will inspire and expand your thinking about effective assessment for project-based learning. Tips are organized to follow the arc of a project: planning, launch into active learning, and then a culminating presentation. Reflection is the final...

2,880 148,551 views
Article

Project Learning: Model Schools with Solutions

Project learning encourages students to explore real-world challenges while developing cross-curriculum skills in small collaborative groups. Edutopia has visited many schools that have implemented project-based learning programs -- here are some of the best...

1 2 7,736 views
Article

Project-Based Learning Professional Development Guide

An overview of the Edutopia professional development guide for teaching how to use project-based learning in the classroom.

15 149 60,317 views