Friday, June 26, 2015
Blog Post #9
Project Based Learning is beneficial to students of all ages, but it becomes most beneficial when it includes the seven essential elements. According to Seven Essentials for Project Based Learning, those seven elements include: 1) a need to know, 2) a driving question, 3) student voice and choice, 4) 21st century skills, 5) inquiry and innovation, 6) feedback and revision 7) a publicly presented product. As stated by Tony Vincent in Project Based Learning for Teachers, PBL lets students "take charge of their own learning." Projects are aligned with the Common Core Standards which tell the teachers what content needs to taught. PBL lets the teachers choose how to go about teaching a concept. Tony quotes Albert Einstein in saying "I never teach my pupils. I only attempt to provide the conditions in which they can learn."
In Brandon Pflug's blog Project Based Learning in PE, he shows the importance of real world relevance. High school students were asked to create a fitness program for middle school students. While including the six standards of physical education, this project also included important aspects of PBL including collaboration, student choice, 21st century applications, and a publicly presented product.
In his blog post Ten Sites Supporting Digital Classroom Collaboration in Project Based Learning , Mike Gorman gives a list of sites that will help with the collaboration aspect of PBL. His list includes Titan Pad, Wall Wisher, Corkboardme, Google Docs, Today's Meet, Will You Type With Me, Linoit, Skype in Education, and Quick Share Screens. Collaboration is a key part of PBL because it teaches students how to work together.
In the PBS Newshour video and article Two Students Solve the Problem of Watery Ketchup by Designing a New Cap by Lindsey Foat, the concepts of student choice and real world relevance are reiterated. Tyler Richards and Jonathan Thompson were students at Liberty High School which participates in the Project Lead the Way Program. Their teacher, Brett Kisker, began with the prompt "that they had to come up with something that was relevant to them. So we always start with the phrase, 'it really bugs me when,'" The students chose their problem, did research to solve their problem, and created a prototype using a 3D printer.
All of these articles and videos have a common theme that PBL is a valuable tool to be used by students and teachers when essential elements are included in the process. The options are limitless and the result is students who engaged and excited about learning.