Project-Based Learning

Are you ready to build rich and authentic learning experiences that empower your students?

Begin your journey with project-based learning. Project-based learning (PBL) is an instructional strategy where students gain the knowledge and skills necessary to investigate a real-world problem, answer a complex question or challenge over an extended period.

While not an entirely new concept, PBL is continuing to grow traction as a key instructional strategy. To meet the demands of our ever-changing world, we must better prepare students to tackle complex problems. As a result, it’s essential to shift away from traditional, teacher-centered teaching and move toward more innovative student-centered learning. Research shows that through project-based learning, students acquire content knowledge at a rigorous level while mastering 21st-century skills.

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Join us as we explore the difference between doing projects and projectbased learning. We will demonstrate project-based learning and model ways that PBL can be used effectively in all content areas. Teachers will design or adapt a standards-based project and consider how to facilitate learning, integrate assessments, provide feedback and assess their student’s progress. Educators will gain a deeper understanding of effective PBL facilitation practices and skillfully plan for student choice throughout the learning experience. During the workshops, educators will engage in active learning experiences while enhancing their knowledge base through interactions with other education professionals.

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Sample Trainings and Support

Introduction to project-based learning
Educators will learn strategies to promote active learning in their classroom. Educators will understand the distinction between project based assessments and project-based learning. Educators will participate in a project simulation and experience project-based learning from a student and teacher perspective.

Designing a project-based learning unit
Educators will create a standards-based project design that incorporates a driving question, engaging launch, unit plans, assessments, public product criteria, etc. Educators will have the opportunity to receive feedback from peers and the facilitator.

Enhancing the quality of student work
After facilitating a project with students, educators will reflect on successes and challenges with transitioning to project-based learning. Educators will explore teaching practices and strategies to help increase engagement and strengthen the quality of student work.

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What Teachers are Saying

I appreciated the clarification that a project-based learning unit doesn’t have to be so complex. Also, the template provided was great for planning. As a result of this training, I plan to implement more project-based learning in my class.
-Ms. Brooks, Chester County School District
Working with Discovery Place Education Studio has been one of the most rewarding experiences for our teachers and students. Although some of our teachers have had previous experience with PBL, the experience with the Discovery Place team was very personal and enriching. Our teachers have confidence in knowing how to plan, implement and evaluate Gold Star Project-Based Learning units. We thank the Discovery Place Education Studio team for their commitment to helping us achieve our STEM goals.
-Ms. McPhatter-Graham, STEM Project Director, Hoke County Schools
I enjoyed getting to be the student and collaborating with others to see what students would be doing. I also enjoyed looking at the lessons and talking about things that we could tweak to make it appropriate for all grade levels. I hope to incorporate more PBL’s in my classroom to allow my students to become independent problem solvers.
-Ms. Leech, Kannapolis City Schools
  • K-12 Educators

FAQs

  • Do you only host training at the Discovery Place Education Studio?

    While we always enjoy hosting groups, we find that collaborating with Educators directly in schools is one of the most impactful collaboration strategies.

  • How long does the program last?

    Schedules can be fully customized, however we recommend a minimum of 3 days.

  • Who can benefit from a program like this?

    Our programs are great for formal and informal educators from grades K - 12.

  • What project-based learning frameworks do you use?

    When collaborating with teachers, we utilize two main frameworks. The Framework for High-Quality Project-Based Learning (2018) describes the learning process in terms of the student experience. The HQPBL Framework is a resource for educators and is designed to provide a shared basis for developing and implementing practical and engaging projects. The Buck Institute for Education (now PBL Works) introduced a research-informed model, the Gold Standard PBL: Essential Project Design Elements (2015) to help educators plan and implement academically rigorous projects. These frameworks, along with other active learning teaching philosophies showcase the foundation of how we support teachers on their PBL journey.