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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

Project-Based Learning Through a Maker's Lens

The messy, hands-on Maker classroom is perfect for a PBL unit when the teacher is willing to collaborate, tinker, fix, break, and rebuild alongside students.

14 1 15,963 views
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Technology at the Rock: PBL-Driven Integrated Study

A middle school PBL unit about key 19th century inventions grows into an examination of history, ethics, and the relative values of 21st century technologies.

6 1 2,817 views
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A World of Project Ideas (You Can Steal)

To get off to a flying start planning this summer, borrow good project ideas from other teachers and adapt them to fit your context.

8 3 27,307 views
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Grit Happens in PBL

Looking for practical applications of grit? Try project-based learning and move beyond character education to teach students how stuff gets done in the real world.

7 3 6,024 views
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Personalized PBL: Student-Designed Learning

Project-based learning may be the best vehicle for personalized learning as teachers move beyond "course-based" approaches and open the way for student-designed curriculum.

6 4 8,634 views
Five Keys to Rigorous Project-Based Learning
video

Five Keys to Rigorous Project-Based Learning

Well-designed project-based learning (PBL) has been shown to result in deeper learning and engaged, self-directed learners. Learn more about the five core elements of successful PBL.

12 79 40,258 views
blog

From Modern Farm to Sustainable Table: Teaching STEM and Humanities with Authenticity

Follow a ninth grade interdisciplinary PBL class from an on-site sustainability study through designing hydroponic gardens, growing food, and an Iron Chef cook-off.

2 3,514 views

Pages

blog

Designing Science Inquiry: Claim + Evidence + Reasoning = Explanation

Edutopia blogger Eric Brunsell breaks scientific inquiry down into the basic CER model and offers suggestions for introducing it to students.

18 46,437 views
blog

How to Write Effective Driving Questions for Project-Based Learning

Good driving questions are written to help guide the teacher and the student.

2 8 44,628 views
article

Kids Feel the Power of Poetry in Performance

Through slam poetry, students reach new heights in literacy and in life.

10 3 44,226 views
Applying Math Skills to a Real-World Problem
video

Applying Math Skills to a Real-World Problem

Students in Eeva Reeder's geometry class design schools for 2050.

15 3 42,316 views
Five Keys to Rigorous Project-Based Learning
video

Five Keys to Rigorous Project-Based Learning

Well-designed project-based learning (PBL) has been shown to result in deeper learning and engaged, self-directed learners. Learn more about the five core elements of successful PBL.

12 79 40,258 views
article

Why Is Project-Based Learning Important?

The many merits of using project-based learning in the classroom with our Project-Based Learning Professional Development Guide.

8 2 39,957 views
article

Taking It to the Class: Green Projects for the Classroom

Try these great lesson ideas for environmentally conscious teachers (and their lucky students).

8 39,054 views

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