The first problem based learning project at the European School of Helsinki.
The topic for P3/4 in Discovery of the World was ‘My Town’. We decided to start with a long term group project called ‘What makes a great city?’. We wanted the class to practise their teamwork and information presentation skills while working on the topic objectives.
- Pupils had 10 lessons to ‘solve’ a multistep problem.
- They mind mapped what made a great city.
- They designed a map of the city.
- They evaluated their own city against the ‘most liveable city’ criteria.
- Finally, they amended their city maps using their new knowledge.
How did the children collaborate and reflect?
- Worked in mixed level groups throughout multistep problem
- Reflection at the end of each step
- Asked to think about how effective group working was and how effective the learning methods were
How did we assess learning?
- Pupils presented their work to the class and talked through the features of their city.
- Pupils self assessed their effectiveness as a team.
- Pupils reflected on how their experiences helped them develop their new knowledge
- Pupils bring together their conclusions to improve future problem solving
Our thoughts and evaluation….
We realised that although children knew what was expected of them in a group setting, they found in difficult to put into practice.
Our future goals…
- Child led reflection on process
- Children to identify strengths of problem based learning
- Better evidence of children using PBL learning skills from the start
- Children to evidence better levels of learning from PBL
- See benefits of PBL and group working in other lessons