— Paul Curtis (@paulscurtis) October 15, 2013
The one constant with every PBL unit you do with your kids is the final product presentation. Considering that many of us did not grow up in a time where presenting was a norm for us, it might be difficult to teach the finer details of what makes the connection between presenter and audience. I ran across this video that I thought might help: 5 Things Every Presenter Needs To Know About People
While we are so focused on covering the coursework for our assigned subject, it is imperative that we remember that students learn best in context. What better way to put things in context than to make them interdisciplinary and show them the cross-curricular connections? Here’s one example:
Find more education infographics on e-Learning Infographics
There are lots of ways to teach questioning strategies, but to find an engaging method to practice those skills is a little more of a challenge. Sure, they can practice with the kids in their class, but at some point, that becomes monotonous. Why not use the technology you have on any device and reach outside to a global audience willing to help you with those skills? Mystery Skype is one way to do that. Check out the video below of how some elementary kids practice their questioning skills. This can be adjusted to all ages, and I am always ready to help connect you with someone around the world to get you started with your first experience with this. For this and other ideas on using Skype with your kids, check out Skype in Education.
While not specifically a PBL/inquiry project, I found this article on Edutopia’s site about middle school students to be very uplifting. It makes me wonder what other types of things our kids can do to uplift each other. When you consider a good number of our students never hear a positive thing from their peers, it seems like taking a little time out of test prep to enhance the lives of others is well worth it. Enjoy:
Looking to get your feet wet in PBL with some projects that have already been packaged for you? Suzie Boss shares several that might interest you in her article on Edutopia, “Good to Go Projects for 2014.”
While this video is specific to PBL or inquiry based learning, it is all about learning….differently. Know that it takes a special teacher thinking outside of the box to help every last child. You can be that special teacher.
A friend of mine, Christian Long, had the opportunity to share his experience and insight into creating innovative communities of learning with students. He proposes a system where students redefine failure as we and they know it. It’s 20 minutes well spent.
Just a little something to think about.