Bridging the gap between “real STEM study” and how school stakeholders may understand it is a doable task for teachers, says expert Anne Jolly. She offers some elevator-speech essentials to get you started (and perhaps avoid that virtual lab that could be in your future).
Whether you are an experienced educator with several PBL projects under your belt, someone interested in starting small, or a school leader working to provide resources, Boss and Larmer offer insight, tools, and resources to guide you, writes educator Jeny Randall.
Teacher leader Kevin Hodgson finds much to like in A.J. Juliani’s The PBL Playbook. The text is built around practical advice for PBL implementation and classroom experiences. For beginners Juliani’s stories are a lifeline, offering mentor examples and lesson analysis.
After outlining the three design shifts in clarity, challenge and culture Michael McDowell calls for in Rigorous PBL by Design, teacher Rebecca Berger recommends PBL educators and leaders of PBL-focused schools take the time to read this dense but informative book.
In a recent post, Sarah Cooper wrote about her fears surrounding a new current-events project – her 8th graders creating spoken poetry videos on issues of interest to them. Here she reviews the experience and its power to create community as it engaged her students.
Hacking Project Based Learning is a rich resource for teachers and administrators who want to begin implementing project-oriented inquiry learning, says PBL teacher Sandy Wisneski. She appreciates the strong emphasis on student ownership in each of the book’s 10 hacks.
Texas professional learning leader Valentina Gonzalez launches her new MiddleWeb blog, The UnStoppable ELL Teacher, with a look at Culturally Responsive Teaching – what it means and why it’s essential to helping English language learners succeed in American classrooms.
Do teachers always need to be the tour guide and plan every step of the learning journey? Consultant Gravity Goldberg believes teachers can also be co-explorers and create opportunities for students to make their own discoveries. Her sample reading unit shows how.
Anne Jolly has had more inquiries from folk in the middle school arena on whether they should implement a STEM program or a STEAM program. She doesn’t think it’s an “Either-or.” She thinks it’s a “Both” with creativity and critical thinking sharing space.
Ariel Sacks says teachers who read The Flexible ELA Classroom will get to know “an enthusiastic, skilled teacher” effectively applying “many of the best current teaching trends.” Amber Chandler’s practical, student centered ideas include flexible differentiation, PBL infusion, family involvement and more.