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How to use Google tools in Project-Based Learning

How to use Google tools in Project-Based Learning
When you think about some of the key features of Project-Based Learning (PBL), what do you think of? PBL should be student-driven, with a real-world connection. It should be core to learning, include structured collaboration, and have a multifaceted assessment. Giving students a real problem to solve, getting them engaged in their work, having them work with others, and assessing their work with more than just a grade sounds a lot like how many things in the ‘real world’ work, doesn’t it? After all, aren’t we trying to prepare students for the world after school? Many of the tech tools used in classrooms are made especially for classrooms. Google tools and project based learning Planning: Where do you start when deciding on a project your students will spend significant time on, have some say in, that will address a number of learning goals and be meaningful and relevant? Inquiry: Once you’ve decided what the students will be focusing on, they’ll need more information on the topic.

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Tools for Differentiating Instruction in PBL In the first few years of my career, I never understood the nuances of differentiated instruction. When asked by administrators, teachers, or parents, I would confidently proclaim that I was indeed differentiating content, process, and products for all my students, and doing it well. Reality however, was different. If pressed on how I was doing it, I knew I would devolve into incoherent teacher-speak on providing flexible due dates, shorter assignments, and the like.

How Does Your School Garden Grow? On a crisp fall morning, I watched students at Lewis Elementary School, in Portland, Oregon, roll up their pant legs and wade barefoot into piles of sand, clay, straw, and water. There were smiles galore and a few squeals as kids squished the earthy mixture called cob between their toes. It was messy, sure, but also meaningful. Using an ancient method called natural building, students were constructing a brand-new bench for their ever-expanding school garden. Project-based learning moves into classrooms Project-based learning is gaining support in education circles Students at The Ellis School use the Hummingbird Robotics Kit to explore STEM. When it comes to classrooms today, students want more than the lectures and quiet classrooms of the past. They want technology to use as learning tools, they want to collaborate, and they want to work on projects that are relevant to their learning and the real world. Through project-based learning (PBL), students achieve a deeper understanding of lessons as they investigate and attempt to solve real-world problems. Part of this approach’s appeal is its ability to impact students of all ages—kindergarten students can collaborate on and explore problems just the same as high school students.

Making Room for Children's Ideas Through PBL A recent experience at home reminded me that the unfolding of learning can emerge when tasks are in service of a bigger goal that children really care about. That evening, my six-year-old son Benjamin asked me, "Can you help me build a hospital for my dolls and stuffed animals?" I seized the opportunity to turn this into a project-based learning family moment. Garden-Based Learning Schools and community gardens are living classrooms with great potential for learning. In How to Grow a School Garden, Arden Buck-Sporer and Rachel Kathleen Pringle cite the following: Numerous studies point to school gardens as a means of improving academic achievement, promoting healthy lifestyles, demonstrating the principles of stewardship, encouraging community and social development, and instilling a sense of place. In addition, gardens are places where students can connect with global issues through the natural resources of earth, advance community development efforts through neighborhood beautification, and leave their green-print in our ecosystem.

A Project-Based Learning Cheat Sheet For Authentic Learning A Project-Based Learning Cheat Sheet by TeachThought Staff Like most buzzwords in education, “authenticity” isn’t a new idea. Going Gradeless: Student Self-Assessment in PBL I like reading professional material. I would posit that most teachers do. Professional reading (OK, all reading, really) allows our thoughts to constantly shift, transform, and travel to currently uncharted mental territory. How to Write Effective Driving Questions for Project-Based Learning Andrew Miller is a consultant for the Buck Institute for Education, an organization that specializes in project-based curriculum. See his previous blogs for Edutopia and follow him on Twitter @betamiller. Driving questions (DQ) can be a beast.

8 Steps To Design Problem-Based Learning In Your Classroom What Is Problem-Based Learning? by TeachThought Staff What is problem-based learning? One definition, if we want to start simple, is learning that is based around a problem. A PBL Project is Like the Hero’s Journey I’ve been meaning to write this post after hearing an idea at PBL World 2015 in the keynote by Ramsey Musallam, an amazing speaker and high school chemistry teacher. Now that PBL World 2016 is almost upon us, I thought I’d better get this done so I can be ready to blog about this year’s events and ideas. Ramsey likened the learning cycle that happens in PBL to the classic “hero’s journey” first explained by mythologist Joseph Campbell in The Hero with a Thousand Faces (1949).

What is PBL? Project Based Learning is a teaching method in which students gain knowledge and skills by working for an extended period of time to investigate and respond to an engaging and complex question, problem, or challenge. In Gold Standard PBL, Essential Project Design Elements include: Key Knowledge, Understanding, and Success Skills - The project is focused on student learning goals, including standards-based content and skills such as critical thinking/problem solving, collaboration, and self-management. Challenging Problem or Question - The project is framed by a meaningful problem to solve or a question to answer, at the appropriate level of challenge. Sustained Inquiry - Students engage in a rigorous, extended process of asking questions, finding resources, and applying information. Authenticity - The project features real-world context, tasks and tools, quality standards, or impact – or speaks to students’ personal concerns, interests, and issues in their lives.

Six Engaging End-of-Year Projects I don't know about your students, but so many of mine, coupled with Senioritis, were done after state testing. (The well had run dry, no blood from a turnip -- all those sayings applied!) With just a few precious weeks left in the school year, what do you do to keep the kids energized and on board with learning? One thing I knew for sure when it came to my high school students: They had to feel as if they weren't actually doing work.

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