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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 authentic, engaging and complex question, problem, or challenge.
To be considered for points, PBLS must incorporate all aspects of the engineering design process, including building a prototype and testing/redesign.
Most PBLs typically take between a couple weeks and several months to complete and include coursework in multiple classes and across standards.
One submission per class per project. Please submit a picture of your students working on their projects or the finished product. If you're comfortable, please upload the project plan in the additional documentation section so it can be replicated by other teachers.
Outcome of the Activity:
• PBL makes school more engaging for students. Today’s students, more than ever, often find school to be boring and meaningless. In PBL, students are active, not passive; a project engages their hearts and minds, and provides real-world relevance for learning.
• PBL improves learning. After completing a project, students understand content more deeply, remember what they learn and retain it longer than is often the case with traditional instruction. Because of this, students who gain content knowledge with PBL are better able to apply what they know and can do to new situations.
• PBL builds success skills for college, career, and life. In the 21st century workplace and in college, success requires more than basic knowledge and skills. In a project, students learn how to take initiative and responsibility, build their confidence, solve problems, work in teams, communicate ideas, and manage themselves more effectively.
• PBL helps address standards. The Common Core and other present-day standards emphasize real-world application of knowledge and skills, and the development of success skills such as critical thinking/problem solving, collaboration, communication in a variety of media, and speaking and presentation skills. PBL is an effective way to meet these goals.
• PBL provides opportunities for students to use technology. Students are familiar with and enjoy using a variety of tech tools that are a perfect fit with PBL. With technology, teachers and students can not only find resources and information and create products, but also collaborate more effectively, and connect with experts, partners, and audiences around the world.
• PBL makes teaching more enjoyable and rewarding. Projects allow teachers to work more closely with active, engaged students doing high-quality, meaningful work, and in many cases to rediscover the joy of learning alongside their students.
• PBL connects students and schools with communities and the real world. Projects enable students to solve problems and address issues important to them, their communities, and the world. Students learn how to interact with adults and organizations, are exposed to workplaces and adult jobs, and can develop career interests. Parents and community members can be involved in projects.
• PBL promotes educational equity. All students deserve PBL, since a great project can have a powerful effect and help them reach their potential, and even be transformative for young people. A project that makes a real-world impact can give students a sense of agency and purpose; they see that they can make a difference in their community and the world beyond it.