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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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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

Mindful Facilitation: Don’t Do Something, Just Stand There

Last comment 7 hours 34 min ago
11 381 4,583 views

6 Strategies for Differentiated Instruction in Project-Based Learning

Last comment 18 hours 10 min ago
17 5,430 173,613 views

Project Based Learning - Where to start?

Last comment 9 hours 10 min ago
8 1 380 views

Mindful Facilitation: Don’t Do Something, Just Stand There

Mon, 02/01/2016 - 06:00
11 381 4,583 views

Project Based Learning - Where to start?

Mon, 01/18/2016 - 12:59
8 1 380 views

6 Strategies for Differentiated Instruction in Project-Based Learning

Fri, 01/08/2016 - 06:00
17 5,430 173,613 views

Browse

High School Teachers Meet the Challenges of PBL Implementation
video

High School Teachers Meet the Challenges of PBL Implementation

Teachers at Sammamish High in Washington share their difficulties and triumphs as their school moves from traditional delivery of instruction to schoolwide problem-based learning.

54 4,996 views
blog

Focus on Audience for Better PBL Results

Edutopia blogger and PBL expert Suzie Boss describes how connecting students with a real audience often leads to deeper learning.

5 519 8,207 views
blog

PBL Meets WWII: A History Lesson to Remember

Guest blogger Heather Calabro, teacher and founding member of Mid-Pacific Institute's eXploratory Program, details a PBL history project about WWII that her students took to heart - and took much farther than she expected.

3 252 7,493 views
blog

Curious Homework: An Inquiry Project for Students and Parents

Blogger Suzie Boss presents real examples of how to continue to engage student curiosity in school after the homework projects are over.

8 3,001 21,590 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.

24 2,286 16,237 views
blog

How to Build Students' Creative Confidence

Edutopia blogger Suzie Boss proposes teachers carve out a Genius Hour, providing students a regular time each week to tackle projects that reflect their personal interests and passions.

2 1,574 9,456 views
blog

Common Core in Action: Teaching Critical Thinking and Questioning

Edutopia blogger Heather Wolpert-Gawron outlines how project-based learning, with a focus on the common core, and iPads engaged her students in critical thinking and questioning.

6 1,551 23,910 views

Pages

blog

Kids Like Blues: Using Music and Video to Rock Your Classroom

Teacher and musician Jon Schwartz tells the amusing and inspiring story (with generous video examples) of how he turned the blues into an effective pedagogy for his first graders.

8 367 13,561 views
Engineering Success: Students Build Understanding
video

Engineering Success: Students Build Understanding

When long-term projects form the backbone of the curriculum, learning takes off.

7 55 13,561 views
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.

4 370 13,382 views
Four students sitting across from each other, one girl standing in the middle, all with post-it's on their foreheads
blog

5 Ways of Bringing Student Passions to Student Learning

Learning and learning outcomes are more meaningful to students when teachers engage their passions, unleash their creativity, and give them time and tools for innovation.

3 2,128 13,204 views
blog

My PBL Pet Peeves: 4 Common Misconceptions

Andrew Miller firmly addresses some common misunderstandings about PBL, including the ideas that projects are lessons and the public audience can be random.

11 351 13,025 views
blog

How to Get High-Quality Student Work in PBL

John Larmer, Editor in Chief at the Buck Institute for Education, looks at how to get high-quality work from students engaged in project-based learning.

16 105 13,025 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.

3 307 12,847 views

Pages

Girls testing wing strength using plywood
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.

15 225 70,302 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...

3,452 170,580 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 2,141 views
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