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by John Larmer
Editor in Chief

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September 15, 2017
Top 8 PBL News Stories

by John Larmer
Editor in Chief

Sept. 11-15, 2017

Each Friday we post a list of articles, blog posts, research studies, and other resources we’ve run across that relate to Project Based Learning.

Here’s what we liked this week:

Deeper Learning Toolkit
Alliance for Excellent Education
Here’s a rich collection of “conversation starters” and resources—including organizations like BIE that provide support—to help K-12 educators understand and implement deeper learning practices.

Why Teachers Need Their Freedom
The Atlantic
A teacher makes the case for greater autonomy, to allow for more creative teaching strategies (which in her case raised test scores) and help prevent burnout.

Get a Taste of PBL Before Your Students Do
Blogger and BIE National Faculty member Andrew Miller explains how a “project slice” (which BIE now offers among its services to schools and districts) gives educators an experience of what it’s like to learn via PBL.

STEM Project Ideas Guide
Global Digital Citizen Foundation
At first I thought these were going to be “dessert projects” that were more like simply “making something” than PBL, but there are some pretty cool ideas here that could be the basis of a good PBL project—perhaps with an added dose of authenticity and a public product. For example: design a “bio-dome” for another planet; preserve a natural landmark while allowing for global tourism; design a machine that uses an alternative fuel source.

Back to School with The Power of Place
Getting Smart
Emily Liebtag lays out six design principles of place-based education (aka the “other PBL,” Place Based Learning) with examples of schools that make their city, community, or local environment “the text” for education.

Massachusetts districts now trade notes on best paths to personalized learning
The Hechinger Report
Blended learning and 1:1 laptops have been in place for almost 10 years in Natick Public Schools near Boston, but recently they’re focused on PBL. The district is a member of the Massachusetts Personalized Learning Edtech (MAPLE) consortium, so it’s good to see that PBL is being recognized as a key part of a personalized learning approach.

Can Creativity Be Taught?
National Board for Professional Teaching Standards
Teacher-blogger Amber Chandler offers great tips for teachers to boost students’ creative thinking, such as “rethink the problem” and “think divergently.”

Growing an Army of Green Schools for Good
Getting Smart
Tom Vander Ark and Victoria Bergsagel describe schools across the U.S. (and one in Bali) that focus on environmental sustainability and feature Project Based Learning.


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