Project-Based Learning Packs task students with investigating a high-interest topic to discover an answer to a Driving Question. Using the numerous grade-appropriate resources in each pack, students collaborate and develop creativity, critical thinking, problem solving, and communication skills through guided inquiry and the use of planning or organizing tools.
The Project-Based Learning (PBL) instructional framework requires students to use a variety of skills, including collaboration, communication, and critical thinking, to reach a goal and gain essential language arts and content-area knowledge.
In the Project-Based Learning Packs, the goal is for teams of students to find their answer to a Driving Question, which provides students with a purpose and structure for learning. Answering a Driving Question helps students understand what they are learning about and why it's important. The numerous grade-appropriate resources associated with each pack help keep students' investigations focused on the topic and help the students plan and organize their approach.
Learn more about the PBL process and access extra support materials in the Overview.
By using a similar configuration from pack to pack, the lesson plans that accompany Project-Based Learning Packs help establish an understanding of the project-based learning process. Investigation, teamwork, planning, and presentation resources support students as they devise an answer to the Driving Question at the center of each pack.
Students use reading and activity resources in each pack to investigate the Driving Question. Printed copies can be handed out to each team, you can assign specific resources from the landing page, or students can access certain resources through the Kids A-Z Reading Room.
When combined, each pack's resources connect students with the tools to stay on task, work well as a team, plan investigations and projects, present their findings, and reflect on the work they have accomplished.
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An entry event provides a spark to interest students in the topic of their investigations, which are structured by a Driving Question that gives a real-world purpose for projects.
Each pack contains vocabulary specific to the content areas and academic vocabulary of the project to help students unlock key ideas related to the Driving Question.
All students experience the same leveled book to give them a foundation upon which to build their understanding of the Driving Question.
Students create investigation questions, form teams, and set a project timeline to frame their team's research of the Driving Question.
Groups start their research and divide up project tasks. A core set of resources is listed in the Reading and Activities Chart of each lesson, and Research Bookmarks provide tools for evaluating sources.
Teams organize what they have learned to create their presentations. They choose which information to share that answers the Driving Question.
Teams decide on a presentation format from options suggested in the lesson plan. Presentation formats can be chosen during any Investigate step.
Teams practice speaking and listening skills and review the presentations of their peers to ensure everyone is confident when presenting in front of a public audience.
Teams present to a public audience to remind students that their projects have real-world value. Rubrics and other assessment opportunities throughout the project cycle help teachers determine what students learn.
Students reflect in writing about the project and/or process; potentially identifying further topics of inquiry to start the cycle again.
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