In managing a PBL environment, a teacher may encounter some negativity from other teachers, parents, and/or administration. A couple of criticisms I can think of at the moment are:
- Classroom environment appears to be too chaotic.
- What EXACTLY is being learned in this environment?
- Why is there a teacher if the teacher is not teaching? (Say that three times fast! lol)
Anytime there is group work going on in the classroom there APPEARS to be chaos, however it is usually organized chaos. To address number one, I would point out the skills the students are learning. Skills such as people skills, research skills, and collaboration skills. These skills are not easily taught in a teacher-centered lesson.
To address number two, I would point out my state and national standards; along with the skills I pointed out above. Then I would add the skill of time management, which is a highly important skill to have when taking the standardized testing required in many educational settings.
Finally, to address number three…..In life students will not always have someone there to tell them how to complete a job, but they will have mentors and people with seniority that will help them get on the correct path. PBL in the classroom begins this learning process. The process of working things out on their own first, gathering information along the way from the FACILITATOR aka the TEACHER. PBL helps prepare students for “life” after high school. They will always have coworkers and bosses, but these people will not be their teachers. In PBL the teacher becomes the “coworker” that helps to mentor them when they get into a bind.
Click here to see my PBL! Thanks, all feedback is appreciated.