Saturday, January 30, 2010

Isn't It Possible to Combine Project/Problem/Inquiry-Based Learning into One?

I have continued my research to try and gain a better understanding of project-based Learning and I came upon this Voicethread that separately defined project-based, problem-based, and inquiry-based research. After carefully reading the definitions, I started to wonder if it was possible to be able to conduct research that was a combination of all three.

I feel that the students are definitely involved with project-based learning since they are covering a real world topic of space missions and aviation. They have been completely responsible for their own learning and decision-making as they have written and chosen their guiding question for research. They are currently in the process of researching and will ultimately come up with an end product that they will present to their classmates as well as another school who we are collaborating with.

Throughout this project, the boys have been made aware of the necessity to independently find a problem regarding their topic that they are to ultitimately resolve. This would fall under the category of Problem-based Learning, for they are following steps to problem solve by writing a hypothesis, formulating more direct questions to guide their research, and looking for ways to solve their problem as they are fully aware of many possible solutions. In the end, they will present their findings to their peers as they demonstrate an understanding of the whole problem-solving process.

Inquiry-Based Learning involves the boys formulating their own questions, thinking critically, and problem-solving. They have been guided throughout this process, but have been given the opportunity to make their own choices. They are seeing the relevance of the application of grammar as they take notice of how it affects the way messages are conveyed as they reflect on their learning through many written responses. The boys are also making global connections as they solve real-world problems that are taking place outside of the classroom.

After researching, I found a rubric that covered some of the criteria that I have mentioned, and I was able to tweek it to fully meet the entire expectations of what the boys are to learn throughout this project. I thought that it was important to incorporate technology not only in their research but also in the presentation of the end product. I have never seen the boys so motivated and eager to partake in an assignment as they have been throughout this whole proecss.

Here's another great Voicethread that is worth checking out!
Check out this blog for getting started with PBL.
Here's another great blog!

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