According to Brain Crosby in his video Back to the Future, “We need to build schools that honor kids and make this happen for everyone.” Crosby focuses on project-based learning in his classroom, and he never gives up on his students. I teared up whenever he said one of his students had leukemia and could not attend class, because it would make her very sick. Instead of letting this student be home-schooled, Crosby video chatted this little girl every day, and Crosby and his students welcomed her into their classroom and included her in their learning and activities. This warmed my heart whenever I saw this part of the video, because no student should be left out, and everyone should get the same opportunities and education. Brain Crosby really taught me that teaching is more than giving tests and getting great scores. Teaching is about making students love learning.
Paul Anderson, in his video the Blended Learning Cycle, hooks the students by doing something that gets their attention. For example, a really great in depth question. Anderson uses many different ways of teaching in his classroom. Anderson uses technology, quizzes, reviews, textbook reading, and in depth questions. Anderson’s various teaching methods keep students interested in what they are learning. According to Anderson, students have not learned anything unless they are able to explain it to someone else, and I believe this to be true. You can give students a multiple choice test, but sometimes students decide not to study, because they believe that they have a better chance at guessing the right answer. In my opinion, giving a test that makes the students study and really think about the subject is the most effective way to test their knowledge. I recently took a midterm exam in my American Literature class here at the University of South Alabama, and it was by far the hardest test I have ever taken in my life. The test was 25 multiple choice questions, and two essay questions. One of the essay questions was worth 10 points, but the other essay question was worth 70 points! I admit, I freaked out a bit whenever my teacher explained the point value on this test, but it made me study harder. And guess what? After I wrote a 10 page essay for the test, my final posted score was a 99! I may not have enjoyed the hand cramps, but I am telling you, challenging questions on a test is the right way to go. Challenge your students every day, because without the challenge I fear they will never reach their full potential.
Sam Pane’s Building Comics project was amazing!! Even I, at 20 years old, would love to do this project! Pane’s project taught so many skills to the students and the students had so much fun creating their comics! Pane taught the students how to:
1. Write narratives to develop imagined experiences or events
2. Analyze how visual and multimedia elements contribute to text
3. Ask and answer questions
4. Be safe and responsible online
Pane taught so many lessons from one fun project and he is a great teacher for being able to do this!
Project Based Learning by Dean Shareski sheds some light on this new way of teaching. Project based learning increases student engagement and provides an opportunity for deeper understanding. Students use technology to bring all of the content in the projects to life. Students become proud of their work because of project based learning and that is an amazing achievement.
In the Roosevelt Elementary's PBL Program video, project based learning consists of a few things:
1. In depth learning
2. Integrated thematic instruction
3. Based on a “real-world” problem
5. Project and presentation
Along with these things, teachers have to find a new way to teach. It is harder now for teachers to integrate the curriculum into the projects, but once the connection is made it has a wonderful outcome. The teachers at Roosevelt focus on public speaking at a young age so that there is less fear later on in life when students speak in front of a crowd. Students learn in so many different ways and project based learning allows teachers to create different activities that will help each individual student learn.