PBL units can be the most engaging to students when designed around current topics that learners can relate to. That can be difficult for newer PBL teachers who aren’t as comfortable going through the planning process.
Mike Gwaltney has a blog post sharing a unit he put together based on the current conflict in Syria and how it pertains to what the United States can do. He links to the actual documents that are used in the decision making process. These are documents that students probably never knew existed and are never discussed on the news channels.
What I think will benefit you the most from looking at Mike’s blog post is his process. He lays it out starting with the Driving Question and works his way through documents to share and then some facilitating the group work. It is really well done. Look at its framework and try to put a workflow in place for you to do the same in your classroom on a moment’s notice.
Without further ado, Mike’s unit:
While you’re at it, go find Mike on Twitter and ask him some questions and tell him thanks for sharing a great blog post.