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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.

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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.


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.


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: 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.


Empowering Students to Change the World

Last comment 1 week 5 days ago
4 554 2,331 views

Service Learning: Growing Action From the Roots of Passion

Last comment 5 days 1 hour ago
4 384 3,673 views

Aligning the Projects With the Standards

Last comment 1 week 5 days ago
2 84 2,879 views

Troubleshooting PBL

Wed, 11/25/2015 - 06:00
2 855 views

Big Ideas for Better Schools: Ten Ways to Improve Education

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6 357 88,515 views

Service Learning: Growing Action From the Roots of Passion

Mon, 11/09/2015 - 10:00
4 384 3,673 views



Core Strategies for Innovation and Reform in Learning

See an overview of Edutopia's core strategies, including project-based learning, social-emotional learning, comprehensive assessment, technology integration, integrated studies and teacher development.

5 228 280,859 views

How to Help Your Students Develop Data Literacy

Blogger Suzie Boss offers up ideas and resources for helping students learn how to interpret, understand, and use data to drive inquiry.

1 2,030 5,385 views

How to Manage the Angry Birds on Your Project

Guest blogger Chris Hare focuses on communication, a critical element of PBL, through the lens of the Angry Birds game and proposes different strategies for working with red, orange, black and blue birds within your group.

5 36 2,019 views

Maximizing Profit: The PBL Classroom Without PBL

Danielle Lynch of Sammamish High School offers a glimpse of the 21st century skills that remain on display in her problem-based learning math classroom even when students aren't specifically tasked with a PBL project.

4 865 9,256 views

How PBL Prepares Students for CCSS Test Performance Tasks: Part 2 - PBL is Already Aligned for Assessment

In the second of two blogposts, John Larmer of the Buck Institute for Education reviews how the eight essential elements of PBL can fit (sometimes neatly, sometimes not) within the expectations of Common Core assessment.

428 1,851 views

How PBL Prepares Students for CCSS Test Performance Tasks: Part 1 - Defining the Tasks

Guest blogger John Larmer of the Buck Institute for Education, in the first of two blog posts, defines Common Core test performance tasks and how looks at teachers can apply project-based learning to their assessment practice.

6 232 2,692 views

How to Find a Home for Service-Learning Projects

Blogger Suzie Boss highlights one high school example of what quality service-learning looks like in practice.

1 43 2,524 views



New Guide Offers Assessment Tips for the Classroom

Edutopia's newest guide offers ten tips for assessing project-based learning.

7 47 16,481 views

From Curriculum to Communication, a School Immerses Itself in Tech

At Mary Scroggs Elementary School, every day is a technology day.

97 82 16,324 views
Building Rigorous Projects That Are Core to Learning (Keys to PBL Series Part 2)

Building Rigorous Projects That Are Core to Learning (Keys to PBL Series Part 2)

Project-based learning doesn't mean leaving standards behind. Follow these tips to plan projects that challenge your students and align with core learning goals.

3 75 16,156 views

Research-Based Practices for Engaging Students in STEM Learning

Innovative and effective practices at Cleveland's MC2 STEM High School are driving learning and higher achievement for students in a district where every student qualifies for free- or reduced-price meals.

112 16,156 views

Speed 101: Motorcycle Racing as Real-World Physics Lab

Isaac Newton hops aboard a two-wheeled teaching tool.

18 57 16,156 views

Comics Make for Colorful Learning

Teachers have begun to accept comic books as a tool for teaching literacy through group projects.

26 158 15,988 views

Teaching Empathy Through Design Thinking

While empathy is the first step in the design thinking process, keep your students focused on this necessary element as they move through definition, ideation, prototyping, and testing.

6 3,853 15,819 views



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.

15 225 67,312 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...

3,199 169,290 views

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 2,356 views
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