What’s the biggest challenge in implementing project based learning, and what do you do to deal with that problem?
Tara, Science in the City: In my mind, there are two challenges in implementing project-based learning. (1) how to ensure that the project leads to the desired objectives. I think this be best be dealt with by a carefully designed, scaffolded project. There has to be a lot of forethought about what responses students may give, and how to lead/direct them. (2) How to differentiate, or to address the facts that students finish at different times. I best address this by adding in chances for some students to excel, and to build in steps that can take differing amounts of time. For example, allowing students to make a poster or presentation of their work, or to go back and add more details, find out an extension question, etc.
Christina, The Daring English Teacher: The biggest problem I face when implementing project based learning in my classroom is a lack of outside student involvement. Many students will not even read outside of school, let alone work on a project. Also, many of my students do not have access to a computer and the Internet at home. In order to really have the students gain all of the benefits from project based learning, I plan all of the activities to take place within our class time. While this makes things take longer than I would like them to, I am making sure that all of my students have access to the technology needed to make projects.