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by John Larmer
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January 26, 2018
Top 10 PBL News Stories

by John Larmer
Editor in Chief

Here are some articles, blog posts, research studies, and other resources I’ve recently run across that relate to Project Based Learning.

How 45-minute class periods stall learning
The Hechinger Report
High school principal Lee Fleming makes a powerful case for changing the master schedule to allow for PBL, deeper learning, and personalized learning—and explains how technological scheduling solutions might soon be found.

The Seven Biggest Lies that Keep Teachers from Implementing Project-Based Learning
Teacher and blogger John Spencer gives a good overview of what PBL is (using BIE’s model) and describes his own journey from dessert projects to main course PBL. I like how persuasively he debunks seven myths, such as “the curriculum map is too tight to allow this.”

Hawai’i Innovative Leaders Network for PBL School Leaders
Elementary school principal Jan Iwase tells the story of her two-year journey in a BIE-led effort to implement and sustain the use of PBL school-wide.

Planning for PBL Implementation
PBL coach, blogger and BIE National Faculty member Andrew Miller discusses learning targets, the project calendar, and differentiation.

Not Much New in EdTech in 2017; 3 Things Could Change That in 2018
Education Week
Tom Vander Ark reviews the progress, or lack of it, of the promises of new technologies to change education, including gamification. He notes the continued spread of PBL, maker- and inquiry based learning coupled with SEL, and calls for public-private partnerships as a way to move forward in 2018.

A Project-Based Learning Spectrum: 25 Questions To Guide Your PBL Planning
Terry Heick offers teachers (or students designing their own projects) a helpful list of questions, ranging from simple to complex on a 6-point scale.

Tips to Engage Students Through Collaboration
PBL teacher, blogger and BIE National Faculty member Heather Wolpert-Gawron gives some excellent advice for supporting successful collaboration.

How Does Project-Based Learning Prepare Generation Z for the Future?
Getting Smart
Educators at THINK Global School explain how they use PBL to prepare future-ready students, using some thought-provoking metaphors, such as “Be Water,” “Burn to Emerge,” and “Make Melodies,” and “Tie Down Lions.”

The Simple System For Planning Project Based Learning Experiences
A teacher-blogger-author outlines a five-step project planning process—not sure I’d call anything associated with PBL “simple” but his advice is practical.

Using Quests in Project-Based Learning
Ed Tech and game-based learning expert Andrew Farber connects the Gold Standard PBL element of student voice and choice to engaging online “quest” projects that place students in roles such as time-traveling detectives, miniaturized doctors inside a human body, and Cold War spies—and use Minecraft, podcasts, or fictional writing to share their learning.

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