Nina Dementievska, iEARN-Ukraine
and Ivonne Moyer, iEARN-USA
In project-based learning, students are involved in individual
and collaborative work to explore real-world problems and create
presentations to share what they have learned. Students participate
in projects and practice an interdisciplinary array of skills from
math, language arts, fine arts, geography, science and technology.
As compared to learning from textbooks, this approach has many benefits
for students, including:
- Deeper knowledge of subject matter;
- Increased self-direction and motivation;
- Improved research and problem-solving skills.
Eight Features of Project-Based Learning
1) Engages students in complex, real-world issues and problems;
where possible, students select and define issues or problems
that are meaningful to them.
2) Requires students to use inquiry, research, planning
skills, critical thinking, and problem-solving skills as they
complete the project.
3) Requires students to learn and apply content-specific
skills/standards and knowledge in a variety of contexts as
they work on the project.
4) Provides opportunities for students to learn and practice
interpersonal skills as they work in cooperative teams and,
whenever possible, with adults in workplaces or in the community.
5) Gives students practice in using the array of skills
needed for their adult lives and careers (how to allocate
time/resources, individual responsibility, interpersonal skills,
learning through experience, etc.).
6) Includes expectations regarding accomplishments/learning
outcomes; these are linked to the learning standards and outcomes
for the school/state and are stated at the beginning of the
7) Incorporates reflection activities that lead students
to think critically about their experiences and to link those
experiences to specific learning standards.
8) Ends with a presentation or product that demonstrates
learning and is assessed; the criteria could be decided upon
by the students.
iEARN's Model of Global Project-Based Learning
iEARN's model of global project-based learning takes this experience
a step further by connecting classrooms
around the world through an online network.
Through iEARN's unique approach to global project-based learning, young people acquire skills in critical thinking and
cross-cultural awareness while connecting their learning to real
world issues, making learning challenging and enjoyable.
All projects within iEARN are designed and facilitated by
educators to fit their curriculum and classroom
needs and schedules. Participants may join existing online projects or work with others internationally to create
and facilitate their own projects. Classrooms also have the option
of joining a Learning
Circle, which are highly interactive, project-based partnerships
among a small number of schools located throughout the world.
All iEARN projects involve a final product or
exhibition of the learning that
has taken place as part of the collaboration. These have included
magazines, creative writing anthologies, web sites, letter-writing
campaigns, reports to government officials, art exhibits,
workshops, performances, charity fundraising, and many more
examples of youth taking action as part of what they are learning
in the classroom.
web site contains
examples of iEARN subject-oriented project work in different
classroom and school environments as well as curriculum applications.