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

Project-Based Learning vs. Problem-Based Learning vs. X-BL

Last comment 5 days 11 hours ago
29 5,659 139,275 views

Designing Learning That Matters

Last comment 1 week 5 days ago
9 181 18,687 views

Learning by Doing: A Teacher Transitions Into PBL

Last comment 4 weeks 1 day ago
22 197 30,895 views

Getting Started With Self-Organized Learning Environments

Tue, 04/25/2017 - 06:00
1 625 views

Turning the Community Into a Classroom

Thu, 01/12/2017 - 06:00
4 557 2,990 views

A Content-Rich Maker Project

Thu, 04/20/2017 - 10:00
2 526 3,700 views

Browse

Two young students are outside, bending over planks of wood, hammering them together.
Article

Empowering Students With Design Thinking

During a two-week design thinking project, middle-school students drew on their empathy for homeless people to design and build a prototype interim housing unit from shipping pallets.  

612 7,225 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.
Article

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 1,775 18,188 views
An aerial shot of five teachers sitting around a dark brown circular table in light brown cloth-covered chairs. There are three laptops, four notebooks, and three cups of coffee on the table.
Article

The Connective Power of Project-Based Clinical Experiences

A project-based clinical approach develops learning opportunities for both students and teacher candidates, relying on authentic collaborations that involve university faculty and classroom teachers.

1 73 2,492 views
A female teacher is standing at the left side of a classroom. The classroom is empty, except for a large green and brown rug placed side by side with two benches placed on top of them, and shelves are against the back wall with drums on top of them.
Article

Mindful Facilitation: Don’t Do Something, Just Stand There

To help students find their own way in PBL, use mindfulness techniques like tuning into your own body, nonjudgmental observation, and embracing the "don't know" mind.

12 211 15,697 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.

5 185 25,912 views
Photo of two boys playing violins
article

Resources for STEAM

Discover information, examples, and tools related to incorporating aspects of the arts, design, and the humanities into STEM-based school activities.

3 3,336 39,616 views
Photo of students working on robot
article

Resources and Downloads for STEM

Explore ways to use STEM lessons and approaches to help students practice cross-disciplinary thinking and build skills in science, technology, engineering, and math.

1 108 22,922 views

Pages

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.

15 226 56,807 views
article

Kids Feel the Power of Poetry in Performance

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

10 257 55,063 views
Article

Innovative Practice: 5 Strategies for the Early Learning Classroom

Project- and play-based learning are essential in the early grades to develop creative learning dispositions during the brain's most active period of synaptic growth.

13 381 52,572 views
Project-Based Learning: An Overview
video

Project-Based Learning: An Overview

Seymour Papert, a distinguished professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, is among a growing group of scholars who support project-based learning.

64 365 52,073 views
article

Big Thinkers on Education

Some of the most compelling visionaries in the world -- from Sir Ken Robinson to Jane Goodall to Martin Scorsese -- are focusing their attention on how to improve education. Get inspired by their big ideas.

3 1,046 51,077 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.

64 49,831 views
Embedding Assessment Throughout the Project (Keys to PBL Series Part 5)
video

Embedding Assessment Throughout the Project (Keys to PBL Series Part 5)

Assessment can be integrated seamlessly into project-based learning. Find tools for measuring student understanding from the beginning to the end of a project.

2 140 46,592 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 78,233 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 3,450 109,377 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 2,990 views