Monday, October 20, 2014

Blog Post #9 - What can teachers and students teach us about project based learning?

Seven Essentials for Project Based Learning
In order for the project to be meaningful, the "students have to perceive it as personally meaningful" and it must "fulfill and educational purpose."

to boys involved in project based learning
Link to photo source: DDCE Central

The Essentials
1 A Need to Know
Give them a reason why they need to know the information you are about to present. A good way to do this is an "entry event," this is an introduction to the lesson that makes the students have an interest.
2 A Driving Question
This is a question to provoke thought and to get the students interested in doing to project and learning what can be learned from this project. According to the site, "The question should be provocative, open-ended, complex, and linked to the core of what you want students to learn."
3 Student Choice and Voice
This involves giving the students some choice in what their project will be and what they must do. While it is important to give the students choice, the article does give some examples of how the students can have choice while the teacher still maintains control of the overall project.
4 21st Century Skills
Some of these skills involve collaboration though team-building skills, communication, self-evaluation through use of rubrics, organizing time and task, problem solving, and oral presentation among others.
5 Inquiry and Innovation
This involves the students thinking of, answering, and learning from questions that they generated.
6 Feedback and Revision
This is important because it lets the students know what was wrong or can be improved and gives them the opportunity to improve upon it.
7 A Publicly Presented Project
This makes the student care more about the quality of the work because it will be seen. Also, it makes the project more meaningful because it is no longer just for the eyes of those in the classroom during the presentation.

Project Based Learning for Teachers
This video goes over the basics of project based learning, what will gained, and what it required. Some quotes from the video are: "The project is deep and requires students to complete and end product to share their learning with others." Through project based learning, "students can learn collaboration skills, communication skills, critical thinking skills,  and career and life skills."

words that represent project based learning
Link to photo source: IPEL

PBL: What motivates students today
In this video students were asked questions and they answered. The following is the questions asked and the answers the student's gave.
What motivates students?
  • Acknowledging students' good work
  • Having a good, stable future 
  • The ability to have a higher education to achieve future dreams
  • To stay out of trouble with parents
Rewards that work
  • A classroom money system
    • On certain colors a certain amount of money is lost, also on certain colors a certain amount of money is gained. Things can be bought at the "store" in the classroom.
  • Candy, time outside of the classroom, food, school supplies (pencils, notebooks, ect), stickers
  • Different events for different days of the week
 Project based learning: Tips for school
These are tips put together from educators, both teachers and administrators. 
 1 Look to schools for inspiration
2 Do the project yourself first
3 Encourage students to work together to critique their work
4 Give project based learning time to be effective and time to learn how it can be effective
5 Encourage those who are weary of the change
6 Allow time for reflection for students and teachers after the project
7 Let students take control in the learning process
8 Keep the projects and everything involved with it simple at first until you have the hang of it

Case of the Watery Ketchup
This video is about two high school seniors who do a project about getting ketchup to squirt out of the bottle without being water.This required lots of brainstorming on the student's part. They solved this by designing a new cap for the bottles. This was an effective project because the students were interested and they also learned to ask and answer their own questions though this project.


  1. Hello Katie,
    Your post was great. You clearly understood the material and wrote a descriptive summary in your own words. Great job on having working links as well.