PBL - Powerful, Brave Learning. We can all be doing this...
Why did we start?
2019 was the first year I coached a Year 12 & 13 problem based learning course (PBL). 'Launch' arose from the engagement and wellbeing needs of the current students at OGHS. Student voice and teacher classroom observations revealed that:
Why go through with it?
Believe me, there are some days I asked myself, "why did I decide to do this again?!" But my own response always quickly followed - because we have to. Because the purpose of school is different now that it used to be (or it should be!).
"Doing school" by following the old formula is no longer going to set our kids up for success. There are, of course, a great many skills we teach that are still just as useful and valuable today as they always have been. But there are also a number that are not. As I said in a previous post - above all, we are all teachers of learning. We may have subject specialities, but if you're determined to teach your subject to the exclusion of all others, and teach using "pure" methods the way you were taught in the past, then you are doing a disservice to the next generation, where the world does not work like that anymore.
We know what employers already want: essential skills or capabilities that transcend all subject or knowledge silos.
Things like innovation, creativity, collaboration, resilience, mental fitness skills, problem solving skills etc.
THESE are what our learning programmes need to be built around. The holy grail of "knowledge" that education used to be founded upon no longer really exists. Knowledge creation, re-imagination of old concepts, cross-pollination of ideas, taking risks, seeing things differently, challenging the status quo... this is what is driving us forward into the future. THIS is what our students need to know how to do to succeed not only in the future workplace (or the current one!), but in their future lives.
Let me be straight up about the challenges... & share some tips
Amy-Lee Budd is the new Coach for the Launch course at OGHS. Together with the students we will blog about our learning journey in 2020. Previously, Launch has been coached by Rowan Taigel who is now Director at www.whatifpld.com