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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

Innovative Practice: 5 Strategies for the Early Learning Classroom

Last comment 2 weeks 4 days ago
8 372 5,904 views

6 Rules to Break for Better, Deeper Learning Outcomes

Last comment 2 weeks 6 days ago
24 1,192 23,900 views

Using the Talk Show Format to Teach History

Last comment 1 week 15 hours ago
6 62 411 views

Browse

blog

Bacon Apart: A Rigorous (and Delicious) Student-Centered Project

Teacher and blogger Shawn Cornally walks us through a student pitch that, through rigor, competences, and standards, turns into prize-winning bacon at the county fair.

3 158 2,248 views
blog

Why Teachers Need to Be Great Storytellers

To garner more community support, blogger Suzie Boss encourages teachers to publicize their success stories and dynamic tales of project-based learning.

8 866 6,620 views
Internships Offer Meaningful Real-World Learning (Is School Enough? Series)
video

Internships Offer Meaningful Real-World Learning

16-year-old Noah finds purpose and learns valuable career skills working at a nonprofit two full days a week, while protecting and restoring his local watershed. Internships with deep impact are a key element at his high school, San Diego Met, part...

180 2,809 views
blog

Six Outdoor Education Resources for Parents

Cure the summertime blues with outdoor education! In this blog, Matt Davis pulls together six of the best outdoor education resources from around the web.

2 301 3,932 views
blog

Want to Amplify Student Voice? Write a Book Together

Suzie Boss tells the story of a group of ninth graders, a topic that interested them, and the teacher who made it all happen.

1 364 4,157 views
blog

Summer Fun with Food: 10 Resources to Learn About Healthy Eating

Summer is the perfect time to teach your kids about healthy eating. Here are a variety of resources to pique interest in healthy foods at the farmer's market, in the garden, and in the kitchen.

6 129 2,023 views
article

Is School Enough? Exploring Interest-Driven and Informal Learning

Meet students around the country who are engaged and passionate about learning -- outside of the classroom. Explore additional resources about student engagement and passion-based learning for both parents and educators.

339 5,168 views

Pages

article

Integrated Projects = Deeper Learning

Here's how one school designs rigorous projects that blend STEM with other core subjects. See how this strategy might work for you.

127 13,128 views
blog

Practical PBL: Four Tips for Better Implementation

Teacher Adrienne Curtis Dickinson offers four practical tips for taking PBL from a high concept to something easily implemented in the classroom.

2 167 13,016 views
article

Students Can Get Work Done in Groups

For project learning to be most effective, students must understand how to work together.

21 11 12,679 views
article

VoiceThread Extends the Classroom with Interactive Multimedia Albums

Encourage student participation with accessible and engaging digital discussions.

9 45 12,455 views
article

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

Junk becomes classroom jewels for creative recycling educators.

9 2 12,455 views
Mixing Art + Politics -- Integrated Studies in High School
video

Schools That Work: Mixing Art + Politics -- Integrated Studies in High School

Video: Teachers Dayna Laur (AP government) and Katlyn Wolfgang (art) at Central York High School in York, PA, share their strategies for creating successful integrated studies projects.

2 78 12,343 views
blog

Ripped from the Headlines: How to Turn Current Events into Real-World Projects

Suzie Boss shares ways teachers can use current events and news in the classroom, and helpful links to get you started.

10 274 12,230 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...

2,879 148,376 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 7,742 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.

15 148 60,429 views