Let’s get right to it: this blog will focus on practical project-based learning.
When we use the phrase ‘practical PBL,’ we’re talking about digging deeper; we’re talking about the real day-to-day details of project-based learning. Let’s move beyond the high-level theory and the buzz and the anecdotes and talk about actually doing PBL. Let’s literally get practical.
We aim for this blog to be a resource for educators striving to grow their PBL practice, whether in their classroom, their school, or their district. And so we’ll focus on tools and strategies, not only for teachers, but for administrators and students as well. Occasionally, we’ll also rant and rave, but hey–catharsis is part of reflection and growth, right?
We’ve had the privilege of working with and training hundreds of educators, across dozens of schools in Western Pennsylvania, with our work even taking us as far as New England. We’ve partnered with organizations large and small to bring real world challenges to students, from sustainability and marketing to engineering, green infrastructure, and entrepreneurship.
And so now this blog represents our own project, with its own driving question: How might we leverage our experience and expertise to help other PBL educators grow and thrive? What have we learned from all our PBL failures, successes, and challenges over the years?
Just like PBL, there will be times when we get things wrong; our experiences are not universal, and every learning environment is unique; what worked for us in the past may not work for you now. But I hope that the ideas that we share here will help you to grow faster while also avoiding some of the same pitfalls and faceplants that we’ve taken in the name of deeper learning.
Here’s a preview of some the topics that you can expect from this blog:
- Crafting effective assessments
- Methods for brainstorming
- Protocols for feedback, revision, and reflection
- Ways to build a PBL culture
- Empowering student voice and choice
- Cultivating an authentic audience
- Supporting PBL educators
- Seeking out real world connections
- Strategies for beginners
- In-depth tools for PBL veterans
- “Need to Know” advice responding to real PBL educator questions