What you need to know
PBL motivates kids to gain knowledge through exploration and observation. Projects provide your child the chance to apply the skills they learn in school to personally relevant and real-world situations. Your child also learns skills in PBL such as how to think critically, solve problems, work in teams, and make presentations. These skills will help students succeed in the future, both in school and in today’s work world. Your role in their learning is essential!
So what is your job? Below are some key ways you can help support your child in project based learning.
1) Be a role model for learning. You are your child’s first teacher. The more they see you enjoying exploration, coming up with questions, and creating; the more they will. You can model PBL wherever you are by asking questions about what you are observing and describing your own “project process” for your child.
2) Pay attention to what your child loves. Find out what interests your child and help them have opportunities to explore it.
3) Take an interest to what your child is learning. It is so important that you know what your child is working on at school. Ask them about the projects they are working on. Help them learn more at home through research or outside experiences. Your interest in your child’s projects will help them to continue their learning. When they are “stuck” they will have an additional resource to help them.
4) Connect what your child learns to everyday life. Make learning and projects part of your child’s everyday experience, especially when it comes out of your child’s natural questions. When you cook together, do measuring math. When you drive in the car, count license plates and talk about the states.
5) Help your child take charge of their learning. Don’t “save” your child when they are approaching a “failure”. Failure is one of the best ways for children to learn and take responsibility for themselves.
6) Learn something new yourself. You can demonstrate the project process for your child through learning something new. Show them how you ask questions, explore, research, and make mistakes. Let them see what you create for a product.
Communicating with Your Advisor
Do you want to know more about your child’s project and how to support them at home? The best way to get in contact with your advisor is through email (click on your advisor’s name below). You can also look for import updates happening in your child’s classroom through viewing their classroom webpage (click on the grade level below).