YS Schools share PBL knowledge
- Published: November 16, 2015
In recent weeks, Yellow Springs students and staff have been sharing the impact of project-based learning, or PBL, with educational leaders across the state. Yellow Springs Schools have hosted educators and visited other districts to highlight Yellow Springs’ experience with PBL, an educational philosophy that allows students to develop practical skills and gain knowledge by exploring solutions to real world problems.
On Oct. 22 and 23, a team of Yellow Springs students and educators held sessions with peers from Wickliffe and Perry high schools in the Cleveland area through Project Authentic Learning Personalized for Higher Achievement, or Project ALPHA. The YSHS team worked with the peer students to assist in the development of a seven-week long project answering the question: “How can we, as school leaders, use the next seven weeks to improve the educational experience in our school community?”
“Our students were excellent facilitators, bringing the skills they have been learning over the last three years in Yellow Springs Schools,” said Eli Hurwitz, Yellow Springs’ PBL coach and library media specialist. “They left Cleveland exhausted, but confident in their ability to work with their groups to help them be successful.”
The Cleveland-area students left these sessions with real, actionable projects to complete over the next seven weeks, including starting a food garden, with a chicken coop and chickens in the Wickcliffe courtyard, and starting a peer tutoring and ACT and SAT prep program at Perry High School. The Wickliffe and Perry students will connect online to Yellow Springs’ Exhibition Night in December to share the results of this work.
Yellow Springs also hosted a team of educators from Finneytown, Ohio, on Oct. 7. During these visits, the Finneytown group had the opportunity to observe PBL in classrooms throughout the district and meet with students and staff to learn more about their experiences in Yellow Springs Schools.
A second group from Finneytown will visit the district again soon.
The Project ALPHA Team from Yellow Springs includes Hurwitz, YSHS Principal Dr. Tim Krier and teacher Brandon Lowry, and students Lake Miller, Ethan Dewine, Nekyla Hawkins, Lorien Chavez, Aza Hurwitz, Raine Galvin, Alex Ronnebaum, Alexandra Spitz, Janine Stover and Noah Krier.
“We are grateful for these opportunities to not only share the incredible outcomes we’ve seen at Yellow Springs, but also to empower our students and staff to be leaders in making a difference in the lives of their peers,” said YS Superintendent Mario Basora.