Friday, December 12, 2008

Edutopia Article on Project Based Learning

Click here to read the article: Put To the Test: Confronting Concerns about Project Based Learning. While I enjoyed reading this article and it brought up many good points, I think there is something missing. As a teacher of project based learning, I have found that good relationships with students to be the most powerful dictator of success.

I have the utmost respect for the work that
The Buck Institute is doing, but I have never heard them talk about the relationships part of what makes PBL. While they have the two R's down (Rigor and Relevancy), they are missing the 3rd R (Relationships). After all, if PBL is implemented with the same, warehouse like school culture, the shift in the students may only be incremental. Their is so much talk about "investing in kids." Their is no bigger investment we can make than to get to know each individual student.

Now for praise... I am glad to see how much literature and information the Buck Institute is providing people. They have become true advocates for PBL and Inquiry Based Learning. I hope their influence can start to convince colleges around the country to train teachers in this curriculum and student centered approach.

I have to agree with the article though: once you go PBL, going back to traditional education seems unfathomable.


Tuesday, December 02, 2008

MPR Piece on MN Charters

Star Tribune Letter (by a Co-Worker)

I am proud to say I work with Karen. As teachers, we need to be advocates for things we believe in. We need to stand up for our students and our community.

Click here to read: The Value of Charter Schools Goes Way Beyond Test Scores