7 Must-Have Problem Based Learning Apps, Tools and Resources
Problem Based Learning (PBL) can radically change student learning. Rather than stuff students full of facts or material to memorize, problem based learning encourages students to solve problems independently (or in groups) to find solutions. Additionally, problem based learning is student-centered, which is where all of education is headed.
Robert Delisle explains, “PBL asks students to demonstrate an understanding of the material, not just to parrot back information with a few word changes. Research and teachers’ experience have demonstrated that active instructional techniques like PBL can motivate bored students and raise their understanding and achievement.”
Therefore, teachers must make efforts to provide students with problem based learning activities. To grow your collection of PBL resources, here are seven must-have apps and tools:
Educurious is a website with supplemental apps that aims to turn students into “developing experts” by connecting them with real-world mentors. The site includes Common Core aligned curriculum that works to include 21st century technology, problem based learning skills, and connections with experts.
Newsela is an incredible website that offers news articles from several major publications in several different reading levels. It works well with encouraging students to think critically and ask meaningful questions about the world around them. Plus, it features articles on all different subjects, such as science, math, and history.
When students are engaged in collaborative work, Padlet is a great tool for the classroom. It works as an online bulletin board where students can post ideas, images, videos, and more. With problem based learning, Padlet works as an excellent starting point where students can post research questions and post the answers they find as they research.
This unique app features a collection of starter questions to help students and teachers begin problem based learning activities. Each starter question also contains links to other resources to help students work to solve the problem in a real-world way.
Project Foundry is a popular learning tool that enables students to plan their own learning and track their progress. It also makes organizing student projects much easier for students and teachers. Schools also love that Project Foundry gives students the chance to build digital portfolios – a necessary skill in today’s evolving technological culture.
TED Ed is a fantastic resource for helping students gain insights into real-world problems. The site’s collection of engaging videos works well to inspire students to want to learn more and take the initiative – both are components necessary for problem based learning.
The Knowledge Compass is a wonderful way to help students formulate questions and begin the research process. The website provides several different types of questions to help students ask the right questions to guide their research.
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