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The Power of Project Learning

The Power of Project Learning
By Wayne D'Orio Here’s a riddle: Imagine there is a learning technique proven effective through 100 years of use that is now enhanced by the power of today’s technology. Imagine it can excite learners to continue their work well past the parameters of the school day. What is it, and would every school in the country do it? It is project-based learning, and the answer is yes, and no. Project-based learning can be traced back to John Dewey and it has come and gone since the early 20th century. Why Project-Based Learning? While project-based learning can be decidedly low tech, the recent surge of interest has been driven by the increase in technology capabilities in public schools. “Friedman’s book had an incredible impact,” says John Mergendoller, executive director of the Buck Institute for Education in Novato, California, a nonprofit research organization promoting problem- and project-based learning. Two other factors help Tech Valley’s mission. What Makes a Great Project?

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Resources for Project-Based Learning Last month we released Projects for all our education wikis. Our intention was to give you a better tool for group work, but, as many of you have pointed out, they’re also great for project-based learning. Project-based learning, or PBL, grew out of early 20th century education reform, like the works of John Dewey. It generally involves directed, open-ended questions, real-life problem solving, and presentation to an authentic audience. And, of course, it’s a great way for students to build collaboration and 21st-century skills while mastering content.

Twenty Ideas for Engaging Projects The start of the school year offers an ideal time to introduce students to project-based learning. By starting with engaging projects, you'll grab their interest while establishing a solid foundation of important skills, such as knowing how to conduct research, engage experts, and collaborate with peers. In honor of Edutopia's 20th anniversary, here are 20 project ideas to get learning off to a good start. Project-Based Learning and Common Core Standards The first question about Common Core State Standards, What will they look like?, has been answered. The answer is: Very different.

Teaching Creativity Through Projects Today I would like to focus my blog post on what I believe is the best what to teach 21st Century Skills and school technology to our students — projects. The school I taught at before coming to my current school was a PBL or Project-Based Learning school. This meant that most of the concepts and skills that were being taught to students were part of a larger projects — students love to learn this way. Although most schools really do work this way, this school had made it part of it’s formal identity. Just to be clear, my current school teaches a lot through projects as well. Project-Based Learning: An Overview Student: We would place the dome right here, for instance. Narrator: These sophomore geometry students in Seattle, have a problem. And they're excited about solving it. Eeva: The problem that they have to solve, is how do you design a state of the art high school in the year 2050, on a particular site. Students are in teams of three to four, and they're in a design competition for a contract to build it.

Using Project-Based Learning to Teach World Languages Editor's Note: Today's guest blogger is Don Doehla, French teacher and instructional coach at Vintage High School in Napa, California. Don recently stepped up to become the new facilitator of our World Languages group. He's got some great ideas for teaching world languages, including the use of project-based learning. What is TPACK? Abstract This paper describes a framework for teacher knowledge for technology integration called technological pedagogical content knowledge (originally TPCK, now known as TPACK, or technology, pedagogy, and content knowledge). This framework builds on Lee Shulman’s construct of pedagogical content knowledge (PCK) to include technology knowledge. The development of TPACK by teachers is critical to effective teaching with technology. The paper begins with a brief introduction to the complex, ill-structured nature of teaching.

Evidence that PBL Works Many of us out there know that project-based learning (PBL) inspires students to understand core content knowledge more deeply and gain key skills for success in college and career. Many of us have also directly contributed to results for students on state tests, college-going, and college persistence metrics. In addition, we know from surveys and focus groups that most of our students are engaged and excited about learning; however, until now, we did not have a rigorous experimental design study approved by the United States Department of Education.

NEPTUNE The NEPTUNE concept is based on the method of project-based-learning. Our philosophy is that learning should be an active, constructive and self-directing process. One of the major aims is that students learn to combine knowledge and skills and that they learn to work together with students from other nationalities and disciplines. To make this possible, NEPTUNE was founded in 1993.

Students Thrive on Cooperation and Problem Solving Project-based learning teaches kids the collaborative and critical-thinking abilities they'll need to compete. Credit: Veer Let's assume the No Child Left Behind Act works fine and that by 2014 every student meets the targeted standards and passes his or her state's exit exam. Will those students be successful as citizens and workers in the twenty-first century? Not a chance. Let's further assume that each state's governor gets the one-on-one computer bug and equips all of each state's students with top-flight portable PCs.

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