In response to the evolving learning styles of the students today, a new method of teaching, called Project-based Learning, has been devised. This aim of this method is for students to gain the necessary knowledge and skill set by spending their time finding solutions to interesting and beyond-average problems or tasks given to them.
The Elements of Project-Based Learning
Project-Based Learning activities need to have essential elements to ensure that the expectations set for the activity are achieved. This means that:
- The activity must be based on an actual problem or challenge, with an appropriate level of difficulty, that can be solved in different ways.
- The problem or challenge should require acquiring a particular set of skills or knowledge to be solved.
- The activity should be able to make the students ask questions to gain knowledge or produce an output. It should push them to look for the answers that they need and apply them.
- The activity should require the students to use modernistic skills that are expected of their generation such as critical thinking, collaborative learning, and learning to communicate with their peers in different ways.
- The activity should give the students the freedom to decide and voice their opinions.
- The activity should make the students learn to use the critique that they receive to improve their work.
- The activity should require the students to have their output be presented in public wherein they will be able to explain their work to people outside their classroom.
Examples of Project-Based Learning
Anything that involves a student in learning and dealing with the real world is a PBL activity. The choices of Project-Based Learning activities that can be implemented in the classroom are endless. Some may be problem-based wherein technology is used to give solutions to problems in the real world. They may also be place-based wherein students are placed in a new culture and environment. Learning is ensured by making them participate in projects that give service to their school or community. Some are activity-based wherein students are provided with hands-on activities.
Benefits of Project-Based Learning
Many teachers who have implemented Project-Based Learning activities in their classrooms have experienced astounding benefits that are supported by studies.
- PBL transforms classes from boring and monotonous to a more engaging and interactive venue for learning. Students become more involved since they now have an activity that they can be passionate about.
- PBL enhances learning that goes beyond memorization of an abundant amount of information. The knowledge acquired is of a deeper level and relevant to the real world. A deeper understanding makes means students retain the information for longer as compared to other traditional methods of teaching
- The skills and attitude that students acquire from PBL helps to prepare them for what the real world has in store for them once they step out of the classroom. Upon graduating, they will be armed and ready to become great professionals in their chosen industry.
Project-based learning is an effective alternative to the usual lecture-style, paper-based, routine memorization that is practiced in most classrooms. It is our hope that more teachers will be able to implement this method for the welfare of their students.
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