Problem-Based learning is meant to teach students by giving them a problem and having them solve. It is meant to put the students in a real situation and having them solve it. Problem-based learning is student oriented.
It is shifted from the focus on teaching to actually focusing on learning. When students are faced with real life problems, it promotes problem solving skills, social skills, research skills. This is very important for students! If they help with a community project, and build all of those skills, it will help in the future.
Problem-based learning is supposed to be centered around problems in the neighborhood, school, or community. Students and teachers should choose, together, a very real problem that is fixable! Like fixing a flower-bed outside, or a litter problem.
These projects are very student based, and to decide how you’re going to go about the projects you have to sit down with students. Once you have decided on a problem, sit down with students and talk about goals, deadlines, materials, and discuss actions to take to work towards the goals.
Students should be leading most of the conversation, teacher just there to answer questions and guide the discussion a little. Teachers should consider how students will present the problem. Students might come across some hardships with these projects, especially including lack of support from the community.
I think a classroom that is doing problem-based learning would look busy, busy, busy! I think that each student would be collaborating, but also doing their own thing.
I think it is a really cool idea! Not only are you learning valuable things, you are learning real life situations and things. I think that the community would also be very appreciative of young students trying to make a difference in the community! I wish that I would have had the chance to do a neat experiment like this with my community.
There are endless possibilities with what kind of projects you could do!
Here is a neat video about problem-based learning: