Often it is the “teacher” leading a project-based learning program who learns the most!

I learned how to blog as a JABA RSVP FISH volunteer. I had agreed to sponsor an after-school computer club at Jackson-Via Elementary School in Charlottesville and I wanted to focus on 21st-century skills. Since blogging is receiving high marks as an effective means for teaching reflective writing, I decided that that would be a good topic for our 3rd and 4th grade students. I had no experience myself in that area so I decided to learn along with the kids.

Our Computer Club Blog can be found at: http://jvcomputerclub.wordpress.com/
Since then we have started another blog/ePortfolio at http://jvjump.wordpress.com/

Those six weeks were a really intense learning experience for me. I have believed for years that the best way to learn something is to teach it. As a result of my volunteer “teaching” experience last spring, I have a new hobby that I will continue to enjoy for years to come.

Below is the Wikipedia definition of project-based learning.

Project-based learning PBL: best defined as instruction relating questions and technology relative to the students everyday lives to classroom projects. Students form their own investigation of their own group which allows students to develop valuable research skills. The students engage in design, problem solving, decision making, and investigative activities. It allows students to work in groups or by themselves and allows them to come up with ideas and realistic solutions or presentations. Students take a problem and apply it to a real life situation with these projects.

Project-based learning PBL provides complex tasks based on challenging questions or problems that involve the students’ problem solving, decision making, investigative skills, and reflection that include teacher facilitation, but not direction. Project Based Learning is focused on questions that drive students to encounter the central concepts and principles of a subject hands-on.With Project-based learning students learn from these experiences and take them into account and apply them to their lives in the real world.

PBL is a different teaching technique that promotes and practices new learning habits. The students have to think in original ways to come up with the solutions to these real world problems. It helps with their creative thinking skills by showing that there are many ways to solve a problem.

via Project-based learning – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.