House and shark tank
Project-Based Learning (PBL) has been around for a while. I’ve read in a couple of different sources that it began in the medical field as a way to authentically prepare doctors to practice medicine. Professors would give students a scenario of a patient and they had to use existing knowledge, as well as research, to help that patient. It got me thinking about the show, House. Every episode is basically a PBL in the way the team works together to gather information and move forward in diagnosing the patient. Shark Tank is another example of TV shows gone PBL--or PBL gone TV shows--because the entrepreneurs have learned skills and knowledge through launching their business and presenting to the sharks. Maybe the allure of copying what's on TV is why PBL is gaining so much traction in education. No, I don’t really think that. I think the promise of authentic learning experiences, engagement, and development of future-ready skills entices teachers to explore using PBL in their classrooms.
The gist of PBL is that students learn through the project that is led by a driving question. Usually, teachers include community members, either in person or digitally, to make connections to the real world.
Although PBL is gaining traction, there are some arguments of critics to ponder when deciding if PBL is right for your classroom or school. One of the arguments is PBL lacks rigor and focuses too much on “soft skills.” Similar to technology integration, instruction doesn’t magically become better because you put a device in a student’s hand; PBL doesn’t automatically equal rigor and strong instruction. However, it can equal that when pedagogy and curriculum are the drivers. Jeffco has a planning template that combines what we know about the Gold Standard PBL and Jeffco Curriculum.
Jeffco's pbl planning template
This post is not about explaining what PBL is, but I would encourage you to check out Buck Institute for Education (BIE) for resources for implementing PBL. Jeffco also has a planning template that has BIE resources embedded to make it easier to explore as you plan. The document helps teachers think through the Jeffco curriculum and use project based learning as the vehicle to create student learning experiences that are authentic and rigorous.
Technology integration and Pbl
Two major premises of project based learning is inquiry for a student-led learning experience and authenticity in how they are applying their learning. Technology plays into both of those goals. Using technology meaningfully in the lesson/project design allows for students to be the drivers and teachers to give real time feedback along the way. Technology gives students the opportunity to be engaged citizens by connecting their learning to authentic problems or projects in their communities and beyond. Last, technology integrated into project based learning gives students many opportunities to learn the skills of computer and internet use in contextualized experiences. The combination of technology integration and project based learning can be very powerful in preparing your learners to be future ready. Check out Jeffco’s PBL Planning Document to learn and get started on planning a PBL!
Be a connected educator
Welcome to week 3 of Jeffco Ed Tech's Twitter Challenge. Now that you've gotten the chance to lurk and read a few tips for posting a variety of tweets, you'll have the opportunity to become more connected on Twitter by both consuming and producing content during a chat. Save the date: Thursday, Oct. 19 @ 7pm MST! In this post, scroll to find information about how to participate and etiquette during the chat.
Final Challenge: Lead Your Nest's V Formation
Participate in a Twitter Chat hosted by Jeffco Ed Tech.
Here are the questions you can anticipate during the chat:
Move to sharing!
Welcome to week 2 of Jeffco Ed Tech’s 3 week Twitter Challenge. This week is all about going beyond the basics and moving to sharing ideas with your followers.
When you take flight in the Twitter world, it might take awhile to get your wings. At first, your flight pattern might be to glide through the Twittersphere lurking around.
But as you get comfortable, flap those wings! Take your Twitter experience to the next level and dive into this week’s Twitter challenge!
CHALLENGE #5: WHO'S IN YOUR FLOCK? CHECK YOUR FOLLOWERS!
You can see who is following you by clicking “Followers” in the upper-left hand corner of your screen. See who has joined your flock, and feel free to follow them in return.
Challenge #6: Hop around the nest: tweet a picture, tweet an article or website, or tweet a gif!
As a fledgling, you’re beginning to hop around Twitter and explore. You have probably come across great resources for your school or classroom. To learn how to tweet a link to the article click here!
Did you get a photo of you and your teammates dressed up for homecoming week? Tweet your photo to show your school spirit!
Perhaps you came across a humorous GIF that your fellow educators would enjoy. Share it! They might need a laugh today!
challenge #7: spread your wings! Tweet an original thought
It’s time to soar! Compose a tweet of your own original thought. Twitter is all about what’s happening in your world and what people are talking about right now.
So hop out of the nest, and tell us what’s going on in your world!
overwhelmed? Use this "tweet sheet" to understand the in's and out's of twitter.
Still haven't "dove" into
the world of Twitter?
We are going to give you the wings you need to take flight. To celebrate Connected Educator Month, Jeffco Ed Tech is hosting a
Take part in a 3-week challenge to start to build your PLN (Personalized Learning Network). Following and connecting with educators on Twitter can help you gain knowledge and ideas to help transform the student learning experience. Details for starting the challenge are below.
Week 1: Be a Lurker - Twitter Basics
Challenge #2: Find some Flight Patterns.
Search for @jeffcoedtech and click the blue "follow" button to follow us on Twitter. Find some other Ed Heads to learn from. Here are some suggestions that we follow:
@COJasonGlass @GoogleForEdu @iste
@alicekeeler @JeffcoSchoology @E_Sheninger
@rmbyrne @ShakeUpLearning @ColoradoSTEM
Challenge #3: Retweet. Find a quote or article that someone you follow has posted. Click the icon to retweet their post. You can also show you like or agree with a post by clicking the heart icon.
Challenge #4: Start Watching the Flocks.
Become a lurker by just checking in regularly and see what people you are following have to say and share. You will be building your PLN in not time!
TUNE IN TO NEXT WEEK'S BLOG FOR WEEK 2 OF THE JEFFCO ED TECH TWITTER CHALLENGE!