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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

Teaching to Fight Injustice

Last comment 20 hours 58 min ago
14 1 351 views

3 Ways to Plan for Diverse Learners: What Teachers Do

Last comment 3 weeks 12 hours ago
31 64 19,194 views

Ideas for higher readers!

Last comment 1 day 18 hours ago
5 0 50 views

A Day in the Life: 5 Tips for the Daily NaNoWriMo Agenda

Last comment 11 hours 26 min ago
1 0 2 views

Teaching to Fight Injustice

Last comment 20 hours 58 min ago
14 1 351 views

Ideas for higher readers!

Last comment 1 day 18 hours ago
5 0 50 views

Browse

blog

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 1 6,363 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 9,284 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 62 50,384 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.

1 3,451 views
blog

Using Entrepreneurship to Transform Student Work

Guest blogger Raleigh Werberger, a high school history and humanities teacher, describes a PBL unit that flipped a class from 'just good enough' to creating a working business model and seeking funds to launch a startup.

2 4,590 views
blog

Innovative Education: Make Room for "What Ifs"

Edutopia blogger Suzie Boss highlights a science project where eighth-graders created a "robohand" after their teacher invited them to solve a real-world problem.

2 36 9,388 views
blog

AP and PBL: It Works!

Edutopia blogger Andrew Miller, challenging the assumption that PBL is incompatible with AP expectations, suggests three ways of making them more synergistic: embedding assessments within the project, using past exams for review, and targeting...

1 4,277 views

Pages

article

Free Resources and Tools for Replicating Project-Based Learning

Educators from High Tech High in San Diego, California, and the Whitfield Career Academy's 21st Century Learning Academy in Dalton, Georgia, have provided these resources for you to use in your own school.

1 1 37,032 views
article

10 Big Ideas of School Leadership

Middle school principal Mike McCarthy shares 30 years of wisdom on how to run a school well.

41 2 36,719 views
article

Project-Based Learning Workshop Activities

Hands-on lessons you can adapt for your PBL workshops, from our Project-Based Learning Professional Development Guide.

3 32,964 views
article

Common Ground: Teaching Kids the Benefits Of Working Together

Cooperative learning helps create the essential skill of working (and compromising) within a group.

1 32,338 views
article

Teach Green: Lesson Plans on Recycling

Tap into the Web and learn how to preserve our planet -- and help others learn how, too.

2 1 32,129 views
article

Project-Based Learning: A Short History

When project-based learning is infused with technology, it may look and feel like a 21st-century idea, but it's built on a venerable foundation.

5 7 31,503 views
blog

Does Spelling Count?

Guest blogger Shira Loewenstein, asked by her students whether spelling counts, comes back with a fascinating question of her own: why is the continuum of learning broken down into a handful of unrelated subjects?

17 1 29,000 views

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