Top 7 PBL News Stories

Jan. 2-6, 2017


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

Here’s what we liked this week:

How Design Thinking Became a Buzzword at School
The Atlantic
This post provides a clear explanation of what design thinking means and echoes a caution we often raise about PBL: “Mindsets, grit, and design thinking are all victims of their own massive popularity” that need to be done well in order not to be “a waste of energy and classroom time.”

Getting Students Ready for the World
Educational Leadership, ASCD
Author and speaker (and BIE guest blogger) Will Richardson connects the growth of mobile technology with changes necessary in our approach to education, with projects playing an important role in tapping students’ interests and giving them democratic voice and choice.

Learning Through Life Rather Than Exams
Straits Times
Singapore ranks very high on the list of top-performing education systems around the world. It’s also home to one of the world’s best-known universities using problem-based learning, Republic Polytechnic (which I’ve visited). Now its K-12 schools are making a big shift, “moving away from grades and book smarts” and “embracing skills, interests and a sense of curiosity… applied learning, and real-world situations.”

3 Reasons to Consider a Co-Teaching Model
This teacher’s blog post gives some great advice about combining two or more subjects in a unit, with an example of a recent project about a mental health issue.

Navigating Religious Differences
Educational Leadership, ASCD
This article is not explicitly about PBL, but it could provide fodder for teachers looking for project ideas to address an issue for our times. The author provides an excellent overview of how to teach for deeper understanding of religions by going beyond a “game show contestant approach.”

News you can use: Infographic walks you through 10 questions to detect fake news
Seattle Times
This article is also not about PBL per se, but could come in handy for PBL teachers looking for resources for a social studies/media awareness project about another timely issue.

10 Things That Must Change About Educators, Education
changingislearning blog
Our National Faculty member Michael Niehoff’s blog is always a good place to find forward-thinking ideas. In this post, he offers several PBL-aligned suggestions to “redefine the profession” including connecting to the community, being a collaborator, and having an innovative/creative mindset.


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