George Lucas Educational Foundation

Schools That Work

Our flagship series highlights practices and case studies from K-12 schools and districts that are improving the way students learn.

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Students learn how to share and listen to opposing beliefs with empathy.

Examples That Work

Real-World Problem Solving: Finding Solutions Through Projects

By using real-world problems as projects for children to solve, Crellin Elementary empowers, engages, and excites students about what they can learn and how they can use that knowledge.

5 136 26,738 views
Learning Partners: Co-Teaching With Community Experts

Inviting community members into the classroom to share their expertise can help bring lessons and learning to life for students.

192 23,714 views
Teacher standing talking with a student as they watch a girl pouring liquid into cups at a counter

PBL can align with CCSS when teachers, knowing their kids' interests and abilities, let projects evolve to meet student needs as well as the standards.

8 150 9,363 views
A boy and two girls sitting together talking about the project they're working on

By encouraging students' wonder and recording their "I Wonder" questions, teachers can view those questions holistically and use them to develop lessons and projects that will harness student curiosity.

4 556 45,325 views
Teacher reviewing work with two students in front of a window with flowers in the window sill

Crellin Elementary, a small, rural K-5 school in Oakland, Maryland, takes hands-on, project-based learning to a level that extends far beyond a few one-off projects per year.

385
A poster pinned on the wall drawn by students that says "Be A Friend"

Through Responsive Classroom practices such as Social Thinking, Symonds Elementary teaches its students daily that who they learn with is as important as what they learn.

9 3,473 86,091 views
Four students wearing snow shoes sitting on a mound of snow

Symonds Elementary's music, art, PE, and media teachers weave their practices into the fabric of the community, getting to know each student while enriching the school culture.

99 11,624 views

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Student listening to a man explain something at the computer in an architect's office
Montpelier High School | Grades 9-12

Personalized learning means student agency, defining curriculum by real-life skills, defining learning expectations, encouraging self-knowledge, and teachers getting to know their students as people.

16 335 15,095 views
Kids on the playground

How a resource-strapped elementary school became a top-performing school with a homegrown, easy-to-implement program of differentiated instruction.

8 324 14,949 views
Kids working independently sitting in a canoe, and in groups at a small round table and a square table at floor height

By redefining failure as part of learning, we give children choices to take risks, opportunities to excel, and the support to grow into their potential.

2 964 14,873 views
Reaching All High School Students: A Multi-Tiered Approach

P.K. Yonge provides a Multi-Tiered System of Supports (MTSS) that is tailored not only to fit the increased academic demands but the unique social and emotional challenges of secondary students.

162 20,122 views
Elementary Engineering: From Simple Machines to Life Skills

At Charles R. Drew, educators use design thinking for teaching engineering concepts to elementary students.

1 575 50,365 views
Teaching Group Work: Building Student Collaboration and Agency

At University Park Campus School, students learn through group work that they have something to contribute.

7 412 30,869 views
Hands at work on an electrical project
Mc2 Stem High School | Grades 9-12

How you can help students take responsibility and meet high expectations by providing the right tools and support along the way.

1 22 14,451 views

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