Top 6 PBL News Stories

Sept. 12-16, 2016


Each Friday we post a list of our favorite articles, blog posts, and other resources we’ve run across that relate to Project Based Learning.

Here’s what we liked this week:

Project-Based Learning at Khan Lab School
Khan Academy
In this video Sal Khan explains how and why they use PBL at his K-9 school in Mountain View, California. Cool video footage of kids paddling around in a cardboard boat they constructed!

Collaboration Nation: National Research Study
Project Playground/Partnership for 21st Century Learning
Here’s a great opportunity for school districts and networks to contribute to our understanding of “how schools approach the instruction and assessment of collaboration skills.” Interested partners need to register by Oct. 1, and conduct a survey of teachers and curriculum directors between Oct. 15 – Nov. 30.

How Finland Starts the School Year
The Atlantic
I love this story by an American teacher about his first year at an elementary school in Helsinki. He’s surprised to learn that, in a country famous for its high-achieving students, the first days of school are not about rules and routines, but play and relationship-building. Sounds like a valuable lesson we can learn for building a PBL culture.

America Desperately Needs to Redefine “College and Career Ready”
“The content our kids study to become “college ready” is largely useless in careers, or life.” So proclaims Ted Dintersmith, the venture capitalist who produced the film “Most Likely To Succeed,” and Tony Wagner of the Harvard Innovation Lab and the Learning Policy Institute. Instead of memorizing information, they argue for hands-on and authentic learning that teaches “essential skills, competencies, and character traits.”

Tools for Student Self-Management
Blogger and BIE National Faculty member Andrew Miller provides a handy set of tools (several are from BIE) for empowering students to manage their learning and work in a PBL classroom. Self-management is one of the key success skills BIE emphasizes in its model for Gold Standard PBL.

PBL Should Be a Happy Marriage
Magnify Learning Blog
Many teachers and school leaders considering PBL wonder how it fits with other reforms. This post helpfully explains how Universal Design for Learning, Growth Mindset, and Standards Based Grading can do so.


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