Tuesday, July 16, 2013

PBL Resource---Thinking Through Project-Based Learning by Jane Krauss & Suzie Boss

“Project-based learning enables students to become active participants in the world.” Jane Krauss & Suzie Boss, Thinking Through Project-Based Learning: Guiding Deeper Inquiry, Corwin
“We know from experience that project-based learning has the potential to create powerful---and memorable---learning experiences for students,” state educators Jane Krauss and Suzie Boss in their new book entitled Thinking Through Project-Based Learning: Guiding Deeper Inquiry. Those of us who have worked in schools that employ PBL are well aware of the methodology’s power for we have witnessed it first hand. As more and more schools move into Common Core State Standard implementation, they are looking for instructional methodologies that most effectively deliver this content to students. Project-Based learning is mentioned as a premier instructional method to teach those new standards.

Jane Krauss and Suzie Boss’s Thinking Through Project-Based Learning: Guiding Deeper Inquiry is an excellent, compact and comprehensive over-view of project-based learning from planning to culminating event. For the school leader wanting a solid, comprehensive overview of project-based learning, this book provides just that. For the educator looking for more ideas on how to implement project-based learning in their classroom, Thinking Through Project-Based Learning is an excellent addition to the professional teaching library. From cover to cover, Krauss and Boss take readers through topics like these:
  • What is project-based learning?
  • Why use Project-Based Learning?
  • How do I implement project-based learning?
  • How does PBL fit in with current brain science?
  • How do we create classrooms that make thinking happen?
  • How can we create classrooms where curiosity is practiced and welcomed?
  • How can we create classrooms where inquiry happens as a rule?
  • How can we design projects that provide rich learning experiences?
  • What does PBL look like in the core academic areas---language arts, social studies, science, and math?
Thinking Through Project-Based Learning: Guiding Deeper Inquiry answers a lot of questions about PBL without getting too entangled in theory. It is an excellent book that offers practical ideas on how to get started with PBL and create student inquiry-centered classrooms. The book also offers educators other content as well. It includes a Project Library for those looking for project ideas, and it has a Discussion Guide for those wishing to perhaps use the book in a PLC book study. It includes a Professional Development Guide for those wanting to zero in on PBL for PD purposes. Finally, there is a list PBL resources in the back worth its weight in gold.

Implementing PBL is a messy endeavor. It takes a great deal of courage on the teacher’s part, support by administrators, and resources. Thinking Through Project-Based Learning is an excellent resource to provide teachers as they implement project-based learning. It is also a book that administrators would do well to read as well.

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