Is there a difference between problem-based learning and project-based learning? I found this post from John Larmer, in the Edutopia blog, a good explanation of the similarities and differences between project-based learning and problem-based learning. Here is his summary:
The author explains that in each, the essential elements of “gold standard” project-based learning are present.
A more recent Quartz blog post states that “the concept of different ‘learning styles’ is one of the greatest neuroscience myths”. Supported by evidence from several papers, the author suggests that we all fundamentally learn in a similar way and in spite of a “thriving industry devoted to such guidebooks”, there is little evidence to prove the hypothesis. It’s not surprising – the theory always seemed a little simplistic to me.
I like the notion of a modern professional learner, a person who recognises that we learn, not only through courses but also through experiences, on-the-job, partnerships and collaborations, and the internet. The Centre for Modern Professional Learning’s infographic explains well the myriad of ways in which we learn and tools we could use.
This week, Adobe released a report on the results of a global study, Gen Z in the classroom; creating the future. Data were collected from over 2000 students, aged 11 – 18 and over 1000 or their educators. Participants came from US, UK, Germany and Australia.
The late-2016 survey asked wide-ranging questions on perceptions of the GenZ creativity, differences between this and older generations, the challenges, how GenZs learn best, and preparedness for life after school.
Insights show that students and educators believe:
technology and creativity are defining characteristics of GenZ
students are excited about but feel unprepared for their future in the real world
there should be more focus on hands-on creativity, the optimum means of learning. The curriculum needs to catch up
being creative will play an integral role in the workplace
increased access to digital tools will be an advantage in the future workplace
As I prepare for another afternoon of district-provided professional development activities, I always make sure that I bring plenty of work to do (papers to grade, lesson planning, etc.)…the sad fact is that the majority of PDs I attend are repetitive, simplistic, or downright boring. I bring other work to do so that I don’t get irritated when I feel that my time is being so carelessly wasted.
“One-size-fits-all” professional learning does not work, and we have known that for many years through experience, anecdotal evidence and research. This was a hot topic in the nineties and early two thousands! In 1999, NCREL (North Central Regional Educational Laboratory) produced a toolkit Professional Development: learning from the best; in 2002, Dennis Sparks published Designing powerful professional development for teachers and principals for the National Staff Development Council, which produced a set of standards for meaningful professional learning.
What have we learnt? How many colleagues have been “talked at”, in our beginning-of-the-year professional development sessions?
…help readers design, revise and evaluate high-quality professional learning by clarifying the elements of learning design that significantly increase participants’ learning outcomes and their use of those learning outcomes in classroom practice.
This report provides an excellent basis for developing robust and meaningful learning experiences.
Education HQ caught my attention today with Lesson idea: get students cracking with codes. The Caesar cypher, Morse code and the Enigma Machine are explained as reasons to start discussing and playing with codes (not necessarily coding).
An ABC Splash email reminded me of the wonderful classroom resources available to both primary and secondary teachers.
“It makes no sense that the word processors are still designed for the printed page” – this is the title of an amusing piece from the Motherboard blog ,complete with links to 1960s and 1970s video clips promoting the paper explosion.
The author takes us through a short history of word processing since the 1970s, and asks “for all they’ve gained, what have modern word processors lost?” He suggests the loss of simplicity.
“Since I started writing as a career, I’ve always preferred my writing tools to have a certain style – I want them as little like Microsoft Word as possible” – Ernie Smith.
Although the online world is capturing our attention with multi-modal texts, are we ready to forsake the printed word? I’m not so sure. However, I do wonder about the percentage of the features of word processing (I’m talking about Word, of course) I use – not many!