AAARRRGGGHHHH!!! I found myself challenged by all the different X-based learnings out there. But then as I read quite a few (too many in fact!) articles on the said topics, I started thinking about the IB itself. Teaching in a PYP school we come across all of these X-BLs. Yes, there IS a driving question but the end result varies from student to student as they have the autonomy to show their learning in their many different ways pertaining to their understanding. So whether it is Problem-based, Project-based, Game-based or Challenge-based, I think it all boils down to INQUIRY! It places the students’ questions and ideas at the center of their learning journey. The IB students learn and build their knowledge by exploring and doing things not just by doing projects. It also helps them to build 21st Century’s 4Cs – communication, collaboration, critical thinking and creativity.
Technology, Pedagogy and Usology
I have been trying to wrap my mind around how project/problem/challenge based learning applies to my curricular area/grade level and my own theory on technology in the classroom. Conclusively, PBLs can powerfully engage and effectively teach your students! But the more important question I asked myself here is that how would technology support these methods of teaching pedagogies in my classroom? Since technology usage in my classroom is not student-driven I decided to shelve this question for now and concentrate more on my personal and professional usage. Does my or my team’s usage of technology before, during and after planning each unit affect, enhance or challenge our students’ learning process? Does it help them to build their Communication, Thinking, Social, Thinking and Self-Management Skills? How can our students apply this knowledge and understanding? And most importantly, are we designing learning experiences that are meaningful?
Of course the more I read and question, the more overwhelmed I get. But then I went back to what Robert suggested in his post and literally took his advice.
Don’t get too hung up on the names!
What matters now
The article Designing Learning That Matters helped settle my mind somewhat.
Learning is fundamentally an act of vulnerability. It is an acknowledgement that what one knows is not sufficient, and that new information and new thinking about that information is needed. – Jal Mehta
In this article, Joshua Block talks about how challenge/problem-based, inquiry-based and project-based learning creates an impact on long-term learning. Even though this article is not about technology integration, it brings forward the idea that we as teachers need to design learning experiences for our students that relate to them and create deeper understandings. After all, learning should not just be creative and engaging but most importantly it should be FUN!