Monday, April 7, 2014

Diving into PBL

Hello fellow teachers/learners,

This week my students (10th grade co-teach) and I began working on our first true project based assignment.  And all I can say is... WOW!  I have been extremely impressed by their enthusiasm and amazing ideas.  I have to admit that I was initially worried about their ability to come up with viable concepts on their own, but most have been inventive and inspirational.

There was a lot of prep on my part in regards to structure and time frame,  all of which I think is imperative to rolling out a lesson of this type.  But, with the help of trusted colleagues I was able to create a system that I hope works.  Keep your fingers crossed please:)

Together my colleagues and I came up with a menu of ideas to help give the students a place to start from, and some examples of what the end products might look like.  They were also given a Project Pitch Form to help them flesh out their creation. I modeled the form after one from Manor ISD.  They are a great place to look for inspiration and logistics regarding PBL.

I briefly went over the menu and PPF with my students, and then set them free.  They were basically told to create a project they would want to share with others.  Their job would be to come up with the product, and  a specific format for audience consumption.  While some went straight to the menu for ideas, others immediately new what they wanted to do.  My co-teacher and I simply walked around and helped students get what was in their brain on paper.  I find that this is a big struggle for them, and I am hoping this unit can help them build confidence and strength in this area.  We shall see...

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