Archive for project-basedlearning SmartBlogs

In a high-school art room, I watched a student working at an easel. When I asked about her progress, she explained that she was attempting to paint sunflowers in the style of Monet, her favorite artist. She told me she liked how the flowers were looking but said the vase was giving her trouble. She planned to keep reworking it, applying layers of acrylic until she got the play of light just the way she wanted.[…] Continue Reading »

As we began our structures unit in Grade 7 this year, students were amazed by the Popsicle bridge structures that lined the classroom from years gone by. I told the class there would be no Popsicle stick bridge project this year, and at first I was met with some questions from my students. Even though during the unit we had done hands-on labs using straws and wood to build structures, they still asked me, “Why not?,” and there was my opportunity.[…] Continue Reading »

I spend a good chunk of time on Twitter, often participating in or lurking on a Twitter chat. I have seen project based learning — PBL — a topic of discussion, but at the same time, I see a lot of claims about PBL that are just not true. What bothers me about these claims is not that they are wrong but that these misconceptions lead to further problems when implementing PBL.[…] Continue Reading »

A wise veteran teacher told me something my first year of teaching that I will never forget, “Every few years, someone is going to tell you how you teach is wrong. Approach X is the best way to teach. A few years later, someone else will tell you how awful that approach is. It’s all BS. Teach to the students in your class and you will always be right.”

I wasn’t sure what he was talking about at first, but then I saw it happen.[…] Continue Reading »

Lately, there have been a bunch of buzzwords floating around the education world that all seem to mean the same thing. You’ve probably heard them: problem-based learning, project-based learning and inquiry-based learning. Is there a difference? How will you know which one to do in your classroom?

First, let’s start with what they have in common. All of these methods place an emphasis on teaching process, not just content.[…] Continue Reading »