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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

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3 Ways to Plan for Diverse Learners: What Teachers Do

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Student Choice and Viral Videos

Thu, 02/18/2016 - 12:00
6 698 5,713 views

Browse

A boy is hunched over a rectangular device on his desk, drawing.
blog

Project-Based Learning and Gamification: Two Great Tastes That Go Great Together

Prepping for a gamified unit of study or project is very different than prepping for your traditional, linear model. Here are some tips on how to do it.

7 2,077 20,093 views
photo of a girl working with pen and ink
blog

Giving Students Charge of How They Learn

By letting students determine how they learn, via task design, rubric development, and student-led parent conferences, we see high engagement, in-depth inquiry, and quality work.

6 1,004 5,910 views
photo of a student working on a robotics project
blog

6 Strategies to Truly Personalize PBL

PBL best embodies personalized learning when you know the whole child, align projects with standards, build a supportive infrastructure, assess often, and get out of the way.

1 1,557 8,668 views
photo of three young women working on a project together
blog

Learning by Doing: A Teacher Transitions Into PBL

For a successful PBL unit, set clear goals, over plan, make students accountable, give concrete deadlines, share rubrics in advance, and reflect on your methods.

21 16,600 17,729 views
photo of young students working on a project
blog

My PBL Failure: 4 Tips for Planning Successful PBL

Here are four lessons learned from a failed PBL unit: align with the school calendar, allow planning time, carefully create the topic and guiding question, and collaborate with peers.

8 671 11,622 views
black and white photo of a young man reading a book
blog

Banned Books, Censorship - and PBL?

Nothing inspires the need to read like banned books! Here's how to incorporate literacy, voice and choice, and social studies into one engaging PBL project.

4 679 2,364 views
photo of students working on creative projects
blog

The Key to Creative Classrooms

Through awareness, empowerment, practice, and methodology, teachers and parents can enhance their own creative skills as a way to begin modeling creativity for their children.

3 1,645 6,501 views

Pages

Project-Based Learning: Success Start to Finish
Schools That Work

What Makes Project-Based Learning a Success?

At this high school in Texas, where every class is project-based, there is a commitment to a consistent process, a focus on relationships, and a commitment to relevance and rigor.

11 614 57,127 views
article

How Does Project-Based Learning Work?

Tools for understanding the process of planning and building projects, from our Project-Based Learning Professional Development Guide.

15 165 54,369 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.

45 53,384 views
Inquiry-Based Learning: Developing Student-Driven Questions
Schools That Work

Inquiry-Based Learning: Developing Student-Driven Questions

Wildwood IB World Magnet School uses the inquiry-based model to put students in charge of their learning, with lessons that stem from student questions and harness the power of curiosity.

2 4,536 53,187 views
article

Money Lessons: A Guide to Financial-Literacy Resources

The Internet offers teaching tools on economics for any grade level.

8 60 52,990 views
article

Kids Feel the Power of Poetry in Performance

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

10 256 52,793 views
Graphic of lightbulb
article

Resources for Assessment in Project-Based Learning

Looking for tools and strategies for effective assessment in project-based learning? To support you, we've assembled this guide to helpful resources from Edutopia and beyond.

2 5,100 49,838 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 78,796 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...

3,469 110,905 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...

1 613,728 2,167 views