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Project-Based Learning
 

Project-Based Learning

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An overview of project-based learning and Understanding by Design. The slide deck and its accompanying project-based learning website were a part off my keynote presentation for Wyoming Seminary Prep ...

An overview of project-based learning and Understanding by Design. The slide deck and its accompanying project-based learning website were a part off my keynote presentation for Wyoming Seminary Prep School’s fall 2013 professional development day. 5-28-13

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    Project-Based Learning Project-Based Learning Presentation Transcript

    • Link to resources: tinyurl.com/o6vmrlt Project Based Learning Wyoming Seminary School Ross Cooper 4th Grade Teacher Apple Distinguished Educator Google Certified Teacher rcooper@eastpennsd.org @RossCoops31
    • Backchanneling Options PBL Backchannel on TodaysMeet #SEMpd on Twitter
    • Your Challenge During the 2013-2014 school year, transform one of your instructional units into a project based learning experience for your students.
    • Article: 8 Essentials for Project Based Learning 1. Read and "mark up" article (2 versions) i. Google Docs template ii. PDF version 2. With group, rank the 8 essentials from most important to least important. (possibly rank electronically) 3. Brief sharing of rankings
    • The Logic of Backward Design The Understanding by Design Guide to Creating High-Quality Units (p. 9)
    • What does unit planning offer beyond traditional lesson planning? (1 of 2) Far too many lessons are narrow, focusing on isolated and discrete objectives that do not coherently build toward an enduring understanding or independent performance ability. The result is often fragmented teaching and short-term learning. The "unit" by definition should embody a meaningful and connected chunk of learning events that build toward some important intellectual outcome in a way that short (often disconnected) daily lessons cannot. The Understanding by Design Guide to Creating High-Quality Units (pp. 37-38)
    • What does unit planning offer beyond traditional lesson planning? (2 of 2) Arguably the most basic implication of an education for understanding is that it goes deeper, beyond the surface. It is not simply scattershot coverage of bits of content. Depth means that we look analytically and from different points of view at the same content; by necessity, that process takes place over many lessons. The Understanding by Design Guide to Creating High-Quality Units (p. 38)
    • The Twin Sins of Design: Activities (1 of 3) For two weeks every fall, all the 3rd grade classes participate in a unit on apples. The 3rd graders engage in a variety of activities related to the topic. In language arts, they read about Johnny Appleseed and view an illustrated filmstrip of the story. They each write a creative story involving an apple and then illustrate their stories using tempera paints. In art, students collect leaves from nearby crab apple trees and make a giant leaf-print collage that hangs on the hallway bulletin board adjacent to the 3rd grade classrooms. The music teacher teaches the children songs about apples. In science, they use their senses to carefully observe and describe the characteristics of different types of apples. During mathematics, the teacher demonstrates how to scale up an applesauce recipe to make enough for all the 3rd graders. Understanding by Design (p. 1)
    • The Twin Sins of Design: Activities (2 of 3) A highlight of the unit is the field trip to a local apple orchard, where students watch cider being made and go on a hayride. The culminating unit activity is the 3rd grade apple fest, a celebration in which parents dress in apple costumes and the children rotate through various activities at stations - making applesauce, competing in an apple word-search contest, bobbing for apples, and completing a math skill sheet containing word problems involving apples. The fest concludes with selected students reading their apple stories while the entire group enjoys candy apples prepared by the cafeteria staff. Understanding by Design (p. 2)
    • ● To what ends is the teaching directed? ● What are the big ideas and important skills to be developed during the unit? ● Do the students understand what the learning targets are? ● To what extent does the evidence of learning from the unit (e.g., the leaf-print collage, the creative-writing stories, the completed word searches) reflect worthwhile content standards? ● What enduring understandings will emerge from all of this? Understanding by Design (pp. 2-3) The Twin Sins of Design: Activities (3 of 3)
    • The Twin Sins of Design: Coverage (1 of 2) It's late April and the panic is beginning to set in. A quick calculation reveals to the world history teacher that he will not finish the textbook unless he covers an average of 40 pages per day until the end of school. He decides, with some regret, to eliminate a short unit on Latin America and several time-consuming activities, such as a mock UN debate and vote and discussions of current international events in relation to world history topics they've studied. To prepare his students for the departmental final exam, it will be necessary to switch into a fast-forward lecture mode. Understanding by Design (p. 2)
    • The Twin Sins of Design: Coverage (2 of 2) What do students remember, much less understand, when there is only teaching with no opportunity to really learn - to work with, play with, investigate, use - the key ideas and points of connection? Such an approach might correctly be labeled, "Teach, test, and hope for the best." Understanding by Design (p. 2)
    • Project Example: Pinball Wizard Which essentials of PBL are visible? Pinball Wizard
    • "If the situations... are to involve application as we are defining it here, then they must either be situations new to the student or situations containing new elements as compared to the situation in which the abstraction was learned... Ideally we are seeking a problem which will test the extent to which an individual has learned to apply the abstraction in a practical way." - Benjamin Bloom
    • Students who "really understand" can... ● Draw useful inferences, make connections among facts, and explain their conclusions in their own words. ● Apply their learning; that is, transfer it to new situations with appropriate flexibility and fluency. The Understanding by Design Guide to Creating High-Quality Units (p. 58)
    • ● Use your writing skills (a general repertoire) to develop a persuasive letter to your parents asking for more allowance (a specific task, purpose, and audience). ● Use your understanding of Newton's laws of motion (abstract ideas) to design an exciting yet safe amusement park ride and explain the various forces involved (specific task). ● Develop an equation and graphic representation (general mathematical knowledge) to compare pricing for various cell phone calling plans (specific data in context). ● Use your understanding of the word friend (general concept) to determine if Frog and Toad are always acting like true friends in the stories (specific situations). The Understanding by Design Guide to Creating High-Quality Units (pp. 92-93) Examples of transfer tasks related to abstract ideas:
    • Webb's Depth of Knowledge
    • Differentiated Instruction ● Differentiate through teams ■ Heterogeneous grouping vs. Homogeneous grouping ● Reflection and goal setting ■ Where does formative assessment fit in? ● Mini-lessons ■ Part of the formative assessment process ● Voice and choice in products ■ Allow students to show what they know in a variety of ways ● Differentiate through formative assessments ■ Can depend on final product. May include conferences, written responses, graphic organizers, collages, etc. ● Balance teamwork and individual work ■ Some students learn better on their own, and others learn better in a team Adapted from http://www.edutopia.org/blog/differentiated-instruction-strategies-pbl-andrew-miller
    • Technology Integration: SAMR Ruben Puentedura
    • Project Planning Template: Understanding by Design 2.0 1. The template (3 versions) i. Google Docs template ii. Microsoft Excel version iii. PDF version 2. Examples of 2 completed templates 3. Project planning with template 4. Brief sharing of projects
    • Your Challenge During the 2013-2014 school year, transform one of your instructional units into a project based learning experience for your students.
    • Thank you! Continue the conversation...
    • Extras...
    • Conversations These are three imaginary conversations, one for each stage of the Understanding by Design template. The conversations help to illustrate the thought process that takes place during unit planning.
    • Distinguishing Understandings from Factual Knowledge The Understanding by Design Guide to Creating High-Quality Units (p. 63)
    • ● They require application (not simple recognition or recall). ● The application occurs in new situations (not ones previously taught or encountered; that is, the task cannot be accomplished as a result of rote learning). ● The transfer requires a thoughtful assessment of which prior learning applies here; that is, some strategic thinking is required (not thoughtless plugging in of highlighted skills and facts). ● The learners must apply their learning autonomously (on their own, without coaching or teacher support). ● The learners must use habits of mind (e.g., good judgment, persistence, self-regulation) along with academic understanding, knowledge, and skill to persist with the task and polish the work to suit purpose and audience. The Understanding by Design Guide to Creating High-Quality Units (pp. 65-66) Transfer goals have several distinguishing characteristics:
    • Formative assessment is a planned process in which teachers or students use assessment-based evidence to adjust what they're currently doing. When initiating a new unit of instruction, a teacher must always give students three clarifications: 1. The nature of the immediately upcoming curricular aim to be mastered - that is, the skill or body of knowledge students are supposed to learn; 2. The evaluative criteria to be employed in judging the quality of students' curricular-aim mastery; and 3. The chief building blocks involved in mastery - that is, the subskills and bodies of enabling knowledge students must master en route to attaining the target curricular aim. Transformative Assessment Formative Assessment
    • Where can you find evidence of formative assessment?
    • Rubrics (1 of 2) A rubric is a criterion-based scoring guide consisting of a fixed measurement scale (4 points, 6 points, or whatever is appropriate) and descriptions of the characteristics for each score point. Rubrics describe degrees of quality, proficiency, or understanding along a continuum. (If the assessment response needs only a yes/no or right/wrong determination, a checklist is used instead of a rubric.) Rubrics answer the questions: ● By what criteria should performance be judged and discriminated? ● Where should we look and what should we look for to judge performance success? ● How should the different levels of quality, proficiency, or understanding be described and distinguished from one another? Understanding by Design (p. 173)
    • Rubrics (2 of 2) "It helps when the students themselves identify the characteristics of an exemplary project so that they will have a clearer understanding of the parts of the whole. This means exposing students to many student-generated and professional writing samples, guiding students to identify exactly what makes each a strong (or weak) writing piece, identifying the necessary writing skills, and teaching those skills. Students now have a 'map' for each unit, [which] seems to make them much more enthusiastic about the process..." - 6th grade language arts teacher Understanding by Design (p. 176)