Think back to the most epic learning experience you ever had. Chances are, it wasn't a worksheet or a section review or a lecture. It was probably a project. A real project. The kind of project where you had authentic voice and choice. And chances are, you remember that teacher forever because of the willingness to take a huge creative risk.
This is at the heart of project-based learning. Our world is changing. At one time, we could depend on a formula: do well in school, go to college, and climb the corporate ladder. But things have changed. The ladder is gone and in its place is a maze. Our students will need to know how to problem-solve and navigate this maze. As automation and artificial intelligence continue, they will need to know how to work within the Creative Economy. They will need to think like engineers and artists and entrepreneurs.
This might sound terrifying but there’s also a hidden opportunity. Our students will rewrite the rules.
But this requires projects.
The kind that students own.
And when this happens, students' lives are changed.
If you're here, there's a good chance you’re probably curious about project-based learning. Maybe you’ve heard the term before but you’re not sure what it means. Maybe you’ve tried to do projects before but they fell flat or they weren’t aligned to the standards or the groups didn’t function well. For me, the PBL journey started back when I was in middle school when I did this epic project that changed my life forever. Later, when I was a teacher, I wanted to be that same kind of teacher for my own students. Maybe your story is like mine. Perhaps you have that epic teacher who inspired you to become a teacher and now you want to do the same thing for your students but you’re not sure where to start.
For the last few years, I’ve done PBL training throughout the world and I’ve surveyed teachers who are just starting out with project-based learning. Here are the most common questions.
What is PBL?
What if I don’t have the best technology?
What about the standards?
What about the test?
How do you make time for PBL?
Won’t classroom management be a nightmare?
What about the structures and scaffolds?
How do I get principals and parents on board?
These are the questions we all ask along the way. These were the same types of questions I had when starting out on my PBL journey and they were the questions I continued to explore for over a decade as a teacher who taught through a project-based learning framework.
But at the time, I had to learn through trial and error. I spent years figuring out what to do. For this reason, I spent the last two months interviewing experts throughout the PBL community with the goal of creating a self-paced course for anyone who wants to explore project-based learning and develop their own PBL unit plan. This is the kind of course I wish I had been able to take over a decade ago when I was starting out in my PBL journey.
This course offers a practical framework you can use to design an authentic PBL unit plan that's aligned to the standards. It also includes specific scaffolds so that all students can engage in the project-based learning process.
BONUS: This course also comes with bonus access to a 10-pack of maker projects.
This course is grounded in proven principles and strategies that work. It’s broken down into simple, step-by-step lessons that allow you to walk through the PBL process. Each lesson will leave you with resources, optional extensions, and an easy-to-follow action item as you move closer to the finished product.
No reverse engineering.
No more hours or searching the internet for something that makes sense.
John is a former middle school teacher and current college professor with the goal of transforming classrooms into bastions of creativity and wonder.