Monday, August 26, 2013

Project Based Learning

SMASHing Experience Project
(Also known as the Senior Exit Project)

Project Goal: This culminating project is an opportunity for SMASHing seniors to deploy effective habits of mind and heart in pursuit of producing knowledge and skills; simply put, we wish to observe how they produce knowledge, act on significant ideas, and behave when the answer to a problem/opportunity is not immediately known. The project is a final opportunity to celebrate SMASH’s unique brand of voice and choice learning.

Project Description: The project has three components reflecting SMASHing Learning Expectations in the social curriculum, high demand academics, and with respect to project-based learning. Students will:
1.    Perform an “Individual Learning Endeavour (ILE).” This part of the project will demonstrate student performance under challenging conditions that require strategic reasoning, perseverance, creativity, and time management skills. Students will choose from any significant area of human achievement and act to develop a new skill related to their area of interest. Students will produce evidence of two hours of off-site learning effort/weekly. Learning logs and parent signatures will be required.
2.    Students will work in 3 person Collaborative Service Teams (CSTs) to perform a service to the SMASH community. Examples of this service work may include mentoring younger students, physical improvements to our shared space, or developing new learning opportunities for your younger brothers and sisters. Photo or video documentation of these activities will serve as the evidence of learning. This work will happen primarily during school hours, but will also require after school effort.
3.    Individuals will develop and present a “Learning Defense and Celebration.” Individual students will comprehensively examine their SMASH experience and present their findings to a group of parents, teachers, and younger SMASHites. Students will develop themes reflecting their personalized experiences; however and critically, examples/activities must be drawn from all academic subject areas. Organized and diligent students will have adequate time to perform most of these tasks during class time.

Evaluation of the Learning Defense and Project Materials
Students will be evaluated using existing SMART guidelines. 

Specifically, they will be asked to speak with clarity, precision, and frequent citing of specific examples.
Measurable outcomes will need to be identified, measured, and discussed during all activities related to the exit project. Special emphasis will be placed upon the effectiveness of the activity they choose to have the group perform during the final presentation.
Accurate information, whatever the subject at hand, is of particular importance in high demand academic environments.
Reliability will be measured by of how frequently and effectively students self advocate for themselves.
Timely action to turn in work and meet deadlines will be measured weekly (20%/Week)

Text, email, or visit! Do whatever it takes to understand the project. I would love to help…

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