Project Based Learning – STEM Education

What is PBL? Why is it important for Riverside?

Times have changed requiring the educational experience of our students to change along with them.  Our students will be faced with new, different demands in their job world than we have in the past, in fact they will be doing jobs that aren’t even in existence yet.  You will hear many talk of 21st Century Skills and project based learning, especially with the newest legislation out of Washington.
In December of 2015, President Obama updated the No Child Left Behind Act by clarifying the emphasis.  The Every Student Succeeds Act answers “a call from educators and families to create a better law that focused on the clear goal of fully preparing all students for success in college and careers” US Dept of Ed.
Among the points this Act proposes is to support and grow local innovations, including evidence-based and place-based interventions.  It also supports and encourages better quality and availability of preschool.  These are two items that are directly reflected on our campus.
21st Century Skills, or the four C’s are:  Communication, Collaboration, Creativity, and Critical Thinking.  Project Based Learning (PBL) is one approach to encourage development of innovation and evidence-based learning.  Matching these up with the Project Based Learning is a powerful thing and we are looking forward to having our outdoor learning lab for exploring and implementing all of these.