Category: PBL

January 15 Ground Hog Day?

In the movie Ground Hog Day, Bill Murray is a reporter covering the annual event where the ground hog looks for its shadow. Each morning he wakes up to relive that day, stuck in a perpetual cycle that matches his boorish behavior. His journey is what makes the comedy entertaining. On January 15, 2014, Congress …

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Grace under a microscope

“It’s important to remember that when things go wrong, keep it positive. The students are watching how you respond to the situation.” I’m paraphrasing my colleague’s comment, which was one of those statements that made me pause. It’s such an obvious concept, yet how often do we forget in the moment that there are others …

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Navigating Our airports

Navigating airports requires a strong skill set of Global Competencies–Communication, Collaboration, and Critical Thinking. Some airports can be intimidating. The expansiveness of an airport is less of an issue than the methods for getting to gates in different terminals. Consider these examples: Atlanta (ATL) There are six terminals, connected by a train system that makes …

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Why Concept Learning?

I noticed a tutor working with a student at a Starbucks. I’ve brought my own kids to such places for tutoring help. Nothing like a beverage to ignite academic thinking. Long division was the focus of the student. She looked to be a tween or young teen, and she looked stressed. “I don’t get it,” …

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Belly Up to the Genius Bar

I’m at the Genius Bar of the Apple Store to get help with my laptop. As usual the customer service is top notch. I’ve had two service staff assist me, and done so in a collaborative way. Both are supporting other customers at the same time that they are helping me, yet I do not …

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Inspiring the Writer in everyone

The Window activity was taught to me by Sally Jessup, my close friend and colleague. She had a gift for recognizing in others a capacity that they did not always see in themselves. The Window activity, as she designed it, is a powerful tool for inspiring writing in all people. She understood that writing skills …

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Communication = Voice

Student voice in learning is a reoccurring topic for me. At every workshop I do, voice becomes an integrated action item that teachers grapple with. This was the case during my sessions at the PBL World Conference in Napa, CA. Fostering student voice is a critical key to enabling them to effect their learning experiences. …

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Differentiated Instruction through the 8 Elements of Project Based Learning

On June 20th, I’ll be presenting at PBL World on Differentiated Instruction (DI). As I immerse myself into that process, I thought this would be a good time to make several posts in the theme of DI. What follows is a way to kick things off… Project Based Learning (PBL) is an efficient structure for …

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Making the Invisible Visible: Scaffolds

I love watching the show, “So you think you can dance.” A show about “amateur” (emphasis on the air quotes) dancers who perform on a televised stage in the hopes of either winning or staying in the competition long enough to get noticed. When the contestants dance in their style of choice their movements appear …

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3 p.m. Remembrance: Learning about Memorial Day

Bivouac Of The Dead by Theodore O’Hara THE MUFFLED drum’s sad roll has beat The soldier’s last tattoo; No more on Life’s parade shall meet That brave and fallen few. On Fame’s eternal camping-ground Their silent tents are spread, And Glory guards, with solemn round, The bivouac of the dead. (complete poem) I’m not a …

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