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.

PrintPrint
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Pinterest
  • Share
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

The Happy Eating Place: How Elementary Students Can Run Their Own Business

Last comment 5 days 21 hours ago
6 54 12,863 views

Big Ideas for Better Schools: Ten Ways to Improve Education

Last comment 1 week 5 days ago
9 619 68,766 views

Collaboration: Key to Innovation

Last comment 3 weeks 15 hours ago
4 1,470 6,926 views

Browse

Students gathered around a table playing a board game
Article

PBL Pilot: 4 Strategies to Implement and Spread PBL in Your School

Two fifth grade teachers advocate trust, respect, and inclusion when sharing the practices and results of their PBL pilot program with on-site colleagues.

8 1,139 6,926 views
Article

Watch and Learn: Observing the PBL Classroom

One classroom observation is just not enough to get the full picture of a project-based learning classroom. Read more on what works when best when observing PBL in action.

3 1,194 9,153 views
Illo of yellow lightbulb with a hook hanging under the base
Article

Powerful Classroom Lessons: It All Begins With the Hook

The lure or hook when introducing new learning to students matters more than we think.

9 1,718 37,352 views
Woman sitting outside with her tablet
Article

Life After the Hour of Code

Give students a taste of coding, point them at the resources, and their enthusiasm will let them apply a once-nerdy skill to any subject area.

1 380 5,442 views
Five children bundled up in a forest identifying rocks
Article

Technology, PBL, and Place-Based Education

A project- and placed-based learning school learns to use cutting-edge technology in the classroom while maintaining a close relationship to its stunning natural setting.

8 1,143 4,947 views
Boy standing in front of class pointing at screen
Article

PBL Pilot: Apps, Tips, and Tricks

Fifth grade teachers share some of their favorite apps for rubrics, editing, and assessment that are streamlining the classroom workflow in their PBL pilot program.

1 2,065 10,142 views
Illo of a Swiss Army Knife with classroom tools
Article

Quality Instruction + Differentiation: Beyond the Checklist

Differentiate instruction through PBL or UBD by personalizing the driving question, having students design their own outcomes, and using the need to know process.

5 423 8,658 views

Pages

article

Cooperative Learning Fits into the Calculation

Master teacher Chris Opitz shares resources for integrating social and emotional learning into math class.

3 49 26,716 views
Article

Creating Schoolwide PBL Aligned to Common Core

Eric Isselhardt of Baltimore's Green Street Academy describes how his school is creating PBL curriculum aligned to the Common Core standards.

11 498 26,221 views
Two teenage boys in protective goggles, green aprons, and blue gloves are hovering over a desk holding a screwdriver, using it with some plastic-metal device.
Article

4 Practices for Increasing Student Engagement

Spend the first five minutes of each class focusing on your students as people. Then keep them engaged through the agency of makerspaces, PBL, or Genius Hour/20 Time.

7 315 25,973 views
STEAM + Project-Based Learning: Real Solutions From Driving Questions
Schools That Work

STEAM + Project-Based Learning: Real Solutions From Driving Questions

At Charles R. Drew Charter School, third-grade students use PBL to prepare for the next Snowpocalypse.

4 210 25,479 views
Four young girls are sitting, writing at their desks. Five young students are standing by a projector at the front of the class, pointing at the screen, which is projecting four different sentences marked with blue marker.
Article

Tools for Differentiating Instruction in PBL

Differentiate the content, process, and product of your PBL lessons with tools and practices like Learning Profile Cards, narrative feedback, and design thinking.

1 2,074 24,489 views
A boy is hunched over a rectangular device on his desk, drawing.
Article

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.

7 145 24,489 views
article

Project-Based Learning: What Experts Say

Educators and researchers share their views on why project-based learning is an important learning strategy for classrooms.

61 24,242 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.

15 214 78,413 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...

2 3,450 106,859 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 2,968 views