Sunday, February 16, 2014

Blog Assignment #5

For this blog assignment the students of EDM 310 are supposed to watch interviews with our teacher Dr. Strange and a 3rd grade teacher Anthony Capps. Anthony Capps is using Project Based Learning in his classroom today. The following videos will provide us with information on Project Based Learning. The videos will also include helpful tips and resources while using Project Based Learning in the classroom.

The first video is called "Project Based Learning Part 1: Experiences of a 3rd Grade Teacher". The main idea of Project Based Learning is that it is driven by content. Students should obtain and learn knowledge as they are creating their projects. Students are obtaining the knowledge as they are doing the project instead of hearing a lecture and doing a project to see what they have learned. The main concepts of PBL is that the appropriate content and materials need to be delivered beforehand. Secondly, the projects need to have the students engaged and interested in the project or lesson. Creativity is important and this gives the students an opportunity to express their abilities and imaginations. The next concept that the students need is a good audience to present their finished product to. Some examples would be teachers, peers, or parents. Finally, the community needs to be involved in some shape or form. This can be done by making the project related to the real world. An important fact is to always use the ACCRS standards during projects. The goal of PBL is to get the students excited about the learning process and actually get them to learn something. A huge and important part of PBL is getting students to revise and reflect on their work. Peer editing is a part of this step.

The second video is called "Project Based Learning Part 2: Experiences of a 3rd Grade Teacher". In this video Anthony Capps provided examples of PBL that he used in his own classroom. One example was the students in his classroom had to write a narrative script on if they were a child in Afghanistan. After they completed that portion of their assignment they were to record themselves and make an iMovie. The students used tools such as iCurio to pull up pictures and videos they could use in their own video. Anthony got phenomenal reactions from the parents and students. From, what I have watched and read PBL needs to be meaningful. It takes a lot of hard work. The outcomes are well worth it and the students get a real experience and learn.


The third video is called " iCurio". iCurio is defined as a safety search engine. Students and teachers can search text, audio, and videos. It is a very handy tool in the classroom. This search engine filters information for education. It also connects with the standards stated above. Two useful features on iCurio is that helps students virtually organize information. It contains folders and drives. It has a large storage capacity for content and has a variety of sources to choose from. If students are working on an activity or project and need to comeback to it it can become handy. It gives student the chance to experiment and has a directory to lead them to the correct information they need.

The fourth video is called "Discovery Education". Discovery Education can also be used by students and teachers. Students tend to learn information better when they can visualize and hear the information. In this day and age students are becoming technology learners. This useful tool can provide text, pictures, and videos. Anthony Capps example was that he was teaching his class about plants. Discovery Education gave him the opportunity to bring experts in to his classroom through video. This tool enriches students knowledge on a subject.

The fifth video is called "The Anthony - Strange list of Tips for Teachers Part 1". This video Dr. Strange and Anthony Capps provide us with helpful tips for our future classes. The first tip is to be a learner yourself. As a teacher you are constantly learning everyday and are also a role model. The second tip provided was that teaching is hard work. The process never ends. Teachers have obstacles everyday and it is a constant process. At the end of the day it is very rewarding. The third tip is to be flexible. Curve balls will be thrown and teachers will have to find alternative ways to teach an assignment. Learn how to respond to these events. Surprises will come that is a part of teaching. Everyday comes with challenges! The fourth tip is reflection. By reflecting on their own work the students can ask themselves how they can make it better for next time. Teachers need to do this as well. Lastly, take pride in what you teach and make sure all your students collaborate and are involved in the lesson.


The next video is called "Don't Teach Tech - Use It". Technology is everywhere and rapidly approaching in the classrooms around the world. The goal is to not teach technology but to use it in lessons. Technology helps students improve their learning. When teaching a lesson gradually use technology. Start slow and never use many tools at one time. Give the students a chance to get comfortable. They will mess up but that is part of the process. The benefits of technology are that students can express themselves, be creative, and they can share their work. The teacher should explore with the technology first. That way if the students have questions the teacher can answer correctly. Questions are a valuable part of learning. This even gets the students to work on their problem solving skills.

The last video is called "Additional Thought About Lessons". In this video Anthony states the four components to a lesson. This information is crucial. Teachers need to be prepared to teach their students. The four layers of a lesson are the year, unit, week, and daily. Each part is equally important.

Project Based Learning Part 1: Experiences of a 3rd Grade Teacher

Project Based Learning Part 2: Experiences of a 3rd Grade Teacher


Discovery Education

The Anthony - Strange list of Tips for Teachers Part 1

Don't Teach Tech - Use It

Additional Thought About Lessons


  1. Your blog post was excellent. I agree that project base learning allows students to obtain and learn knowledge as they are doing the project. I feel that students learn more when they are able to be hands on. Also, technology is growing and teachers are going to have to grow with it by using it in their lessons. Great job on your post.