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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

Resources for Getting Started With Project-Based Learning

Last comment 1 week 6 days ago
9 7,951 46,756 views

Student-Led Projects in Early Elementary

Last comment 3 weeks 12 hours ago
8 1,116 views

Assessment in Making

Last comment 2 weeks 20 hours ago
2 104 5,114 views

Browse

blog

PBL and STEAM Education: A Natural Fit

Edutopia blogger Andrew Miller looks at the enhanced possibilities of using 21st century skills to engage students with real-world challenges through combining the pedagogical model of PBL with the rich content area of STEAM.

18 1,452 22,858 views
blog

For Earth Day and Beyond: Focus on Environmental Action Projects

Edutopia Suzie Boss shares exciting projects to teach students about Earth Day and how to care for the environment.

3 1,474 8,526 views
blog

Students Put Global Skills to Work

Blogger Suzie Boss highlights how high school students from 26 U.S. states, 16 cities from across China, plus a smattering of other locations come together to tackle global issues.

1 147 1,039 views
blog

In China, Students Come Face-to-Face with Global Issues

Edutopia blogger Suzie Boss describes how high school students from the U.S. and China work together to design sustainable solutions for global challenges.

2 104 831 views
blog

"Mom, What is Project Management?"

Guest blogger Chris Hare, project manager and parent, uses a book report assignment to demonstrate how project management is already in place in the classroom, and how easy it would be to fine-tune this practice.

8 1,718 9,559 views
article

Project-Based Learning and the Common Core: Resource Roundup

Explore a curated compilation of online resources for aligning project-based learning with the Common Core State Standards.

2 375 16,209 views
blog

Sammamish Year 3: Teaching, Leadership, and School Change

A year after introducing us to the schoolwide PBL curriculum at Sammamish High, teacher leader Adrienne Curtis Dickinson reviews how their seven key elements have played out in course design, professional development, and student learning.

4 589 5,617 views

Pages

Rigorous Project-Based Learning Transforms AP Courses
video

Rigorous Project-Based Learning Transforms AP Courses

Through a project called Knowledge in Action, researchers at the University of Washington have been exploring whether project-based learning can help high school students with diverse learning styles understand content more deeply in advanced placement...

1 236 14,754 views
A group of about 20 young children are sitting and laying down on bean bags in a library. They're listening to a teacher standing in from of them and talking to them.
blog

Talking About Text Structure in the PBL Classroom

Enhance PBL by teaching students how to identify text structure how to and use it within their project-based reading and writing.

3 1,791 14,338 views
How Design Thinking Can Empower Young People
video

How Design Thinking Can Empower Young People

At People Serving People, a homeless shelter in Minneapolis, local design firms and educators work together to show kids how design thinking can help them make a difference in their neighborhoods

472 14,338 views
article

How to Create a Classroom Literature Circle

This book-discussion method is simple to set up in class but requires preparation and flexibility.

4 14,131 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.

11 352 13,923 views
Very colorful classroom bulletin board with a robot
article

Downloads and Resources from Forest Lake Elementary

Free tools, reading lists, web links and other resources to help bring differentiated instruction to your school.

2 3 13,923 views
article

World Without Walls: Learning Well with Others

How to teach when learning is everywhere.

29 69 13,923 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 80,212 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...

3,470 108,889 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 2,286 views
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