Project-Based Learning Videos

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Here is my selection of the best videos on PBL in schools. This selection includes the outstanding series from edutopia and the best videos from PBL schools on their pedagogy, protocols, processes, and systems for teaching and learning. Besides the videos below, teachers and school leaders can find excellent collections of videos at the Buck Institute for Education, at the George Lucas Educational Foundation's edutopia, and at the Teaching Channel Deeper Learning Series. -- Bob, March, 2016

  1. Five Keys to Rigorous Project-Based Learning, Overview, Parts 1-5
  2. Real Projects, Real World, Real Learning
  3. Project-Based Learning: Success Start to Finish
  4. The Building Blocks of Project-Based Learning
  5. Learning Through Projects
  6. Project-Based Learning, 21st Century Skills, and Assessment
  7. Project Based Learning: Explained.

1. Five Keys to Rigorous Project-Based Learning

This is the intro video to an excellent series from edutopia that will give teachers an excellent conceptual understanding of PBL and its key elements and practices. Below you will find individual videos on each of the five keys (Real-World Connections, Rigorous Projects, Collaboration, Facilitating Learning, and Assessment). You can also see these 5 videos on the edutopia web site.

2. Real Projects, Real World, Real Learning

This is a powerful 10-minute video made by Coppell Independent School District (Coppell, TX) to describe and illustrate, through the voices of students and teachers, the PBL process at New Tech @ Coppell High School. The PBL process includes the Entry Document, Knows and Needs to Know, Driving Question, Next Steps, the Social Contract, Journaling and Scaffolding, Workshops, Collaboration, and Presentations. The videos shows a plethora of scenes of students at work in classrooms and project planning rooms. The class portrayed is a team-taught humanities class. The video also includes some commentary and footage of a math teacher and classroom.

3. Project-Based Learning: Success Start to Finish

This video from the edutopia Schools that Work series is a case study of Manor New Technology High School from June, 2012. It was part of a profile that includes several supporting documents:

4. The Building Blocks of Project-Based Learning

The Building Blocks of Project-Based Learning (14 min) profiling Tech Valley High School (Albany, NY), a New Tech Network school, is from the Teaching Channel Deeper Learning Series, March, 2014. Also watch these specific segments: Collaborative Teaching for Interdisciplinary Learning (5 min), Critical Friends: Looking at Student Work (6 min), Group Contracts for Collaborative Work (2 min), Student Profile: A Self-Directed Learner (4 min), and Milton Chen on Project-Based Learning (5 min).

5. Learning Through Projects

Learning Through Projects (video opens in new tab) from the ASCD series, "Teaching the Adolescent Brain". Segments from Sacramento and Napa New TechHigh Schools. Note: Even though the classroom computers are dated, this video from 2006, is one of the best PBL education videos ever made and received a national award.

6. Project-Based Learning, 21st Century Skills, and Assessment

These 3 videos by the Pearson Foundation in 2009 on Project-Based Learning, 21st Century Skills, and Assessment at Napa New Technology High School are especially effective in demonstrating how well-designed projects embed state standards and 21st century skills such as the 4 Cs (Communication, Collaboration, Creativity, and Critical Thinking). The video shows how students are assessed on these skills, see their assessments on a just-in-time basis, and become self-directed, self-assessing learners.

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7. Project Based Learning: Explained.

The Buck Institute for Education commissioned the cutting-edge advertising agency, Common Craft, to create a short animated video that explains in clear language the essential elements of Project Based Learning (PBL). This simple video makes the essential elements of PBL come alive and brings to light the 21st Century skills and competencies (collaboration, communication, critical thinking) that will enable K-12 students to be college and work-ready as well as effective members of their communities. Learn more about Project Based Learning (PBL) at : http://bie.org/.

Five Keys to Rigorous Project-Based Learning, Parts 1 to 5

Part 1, Establishing Real-World Connections in Projects: Students are more engaged when learning relates directly to the world they live in. See how to extend your projects beyond classroom walls.

Part 2, Building Rigorous Projects That Are Core to Learning: Project-based learning doesn't mean leaving standards behind. Follow these tips to plan projects that challenge your students and align with core learning goals.

Part 3, Structuring Collaboration for Student Success:
PBL provides a unique opportunity to help students practice critical thinking, collaboration, communication, and creativity. Learn how to optimize the environment for teamwork in your classroom.

Part 4, Facilitating Learning in a Student-Driven Environment: When they are directly involved in planning and steering projects, students are more invested in their learning. Get ideas for empowering your students to work independently.

Part 5: Embedding Assessment Throughout the Project:
Assessment can be integrated seamlessly into project-based learning. Find tools for measuring student understanding from the beginning to the end of a project.