Move beyond the book report

Posted by Melinda Kolk on Oct 28, 2014 1:08:00 PM

The book report may be the most dreaded elementary classroom assignment of all time. The elementary Common Core writing standard for argument includes opinion pieces about books, encouraging many teachers to incorporate some form of literature review rather than worksheets filled with information.

A book report that simply regurgitates facts like who, what, when, is doesn't push student thinking and presents no argument. Being assigned such a task is an open invitation to copy and paste a summary from a wiki or even the book’s dust jacket. While we can police student work for plagiarism, we can also do much better.

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Topics: pixie, creativity software, Wixie, literature, comprehension,

Project-Based Learning - What age is best?

Posted by Melinda Kolk on Sep 2, 2011 5:04:00 PM

I had the pleasure this week of working with Jamie Wittig from Cielo Vista Charter Elementary school to explore how project-based learning might look in a Kindergarten classroom. While I have been leading ProjectLearn Academies which focuses on implementing project-based learning with technology for over ten years, each workshop is unique because discussions during the process about how to address a particular subject/topic, grade level, culture, or site needs.

As I was preparing for this workshop, I was scouring my files for not only great examples of project-based learning done with a primary grade tool like Wixie, but also great examples of what authentic tasks, essential questions, and big ideas looked like at the Kindergarten level. I found that most of my examples focused on upper elementary and secondary. Which got me thinking...

Which age is the best for project-based learning?

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Topics: pixie, pbl, technology, project-based learning

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