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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

blog

Academic Discourse and PBL

Math teacher Danielle Lynch continues Sammamish High School's blog series about the seven key elements for integrating PBL with examples of how the principle of academic discourse can deepen math learning.

1 245 8,695 views
blog

Stove Project Sparks Global Youth Action

Blogger Suzie Boss describes how middle-school students in suburban Massachusetts team up with Brazilian, African, and Indian students to design and build efficient cook stoves.

1 172 1,337 views
blog

PBL Course Development: Collaboration Among Colleagues

Biology teacher Jayesh Rao continues Sammamish High School's blog series about the seven key elements for integrating PBL with a reflection on the experience of collaborating with his colleagues to develop new courses.

3 277 4,124 views
blog

Authentic Assessment in Action

Music teacher Mark Wilbert continues Sammamish High School's blog series about the seven key elements for integrating PBL with an account of how an authentic assessment project increased student buy-in.

6 471 13,934 views
blog

Project-Based Learning as a Context for Arts Integration

Edutopia blogger Andrew Miller shares how PBL can serve as a dynamic context for arts integration.

12 577 11,482 views
blog

Defining Authenticity in Historical Problem Solving

History teacher Rob Hallock continues Sammamish High School's blog series about the seven key elements for integrating PBL with a description of presenting his students with authentic problems to solve.

1 188 4,788 views
blog

Shoe Design Offers a Trojan Horse for Problem Solving with Design Thinking

Blogger Suzie Boss describes how design thinking offers a perfect vehicle for connecting students with their community.

11 701 11,816 views

Pages

blog

Practical PBL Series: Design an Instructional Unit in Seven Phases

In this first of a three-part series, teacher and blogger Amber Graeber presents the Seven Phases of a Project Cycle, a practical breakdown of how you might guide your students through a PBL unit.

4 305 11,816 views
article

Personal Learning Networks Are Virtual Lockers for Schoolkids

Students drive their education with custom-made Web pages equipped with RSS feeds.

12 30 11,816 views
blog

Project-Based Learning as a Context for Arts Integration

Edutopia blogger Andrew Miller shares how PBL can serve as a dynamic context for arts integration.

12 577 11,482 views
blog

When Students Do The Teaching

Guest blogger Kiera Chase shares the power of students creating lessons and teaching their peers.

4 265 11,482 views
article

Teacher Development: Fueling Teachers to Go High-Tech

How one elementary school trains and supports its staff to blaze a new digital trail.

5 28 11,482 views
article

How to Use Digital Storytelling in Your Classroom

Empower student creativity with affordable and accessible technology.

8 39 11,370 views
blog

Creating a Welcoming and Intellectually Challenging Classroom

Check out these important strategies for creating an inclusive learning space that also challenges students with rigorous thinking and projects.

1 680 11,147 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...

2,884 148,148 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 7,692 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.

15 150 61,087 views