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Reclaiming Project-Based Learning

Gary Stager — Constructing Modern Knowledge

This session is an opportunity to think outside of the rubric and reclaim project-based learning for creative educators and students. The presenter will connect ideas developed in his four decades of work in schools around the world with progressive educational traditions, and lessons from the Reggio Emilia approach in a coherent fashion to inspire educators to embrace the best of what project-based learning has to offer.

Topics discussed will include the following: • Why a project should be a teacher's smallest unit of concern • The limitations of instruction • A good prompt is worth 1,000 words • The subtlety of prompt setting • Making the case for project-based learning • Projects are not tests • Elements of rich projects • Playing a junior version of the whole game • Moving beyond inquiry • The critical role of computing • Teacher as researcher • Going big • Constructionism • Habits of Mind • You don't have to put on a show • How do you know they're learning? • What do you mean by "real world?"

Conversational Practice

In addition to sharing examples from learning environments around the world, situated in a historical perspective of PBL's roots, the presenter will engage participants in the process of designing and evaluating effective prompts for project-based learning.

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