Category Archives: Project-Based Learning

20% Project Presentations

My students are getting prepared for their first presentation about their 20% Project (details can be found here). Generally, my students have a good idea of what my expectations are for a presentation. In this case, they don’t because there is no “true” rubric. The students only need to demonstrate learning during the project. For some students this will be easy, for others, the process of documenting their work has escaped them.

Many of the students peppered me with questions today and probably ended up with more questions than answers. I wouldn’t give them a time limit, what they needed for a deliverable, or even if they needed a deliverable. My answer to most questions was take as much time as you need and use whatever deliverable necessary┬áto demonstrate your learning. To be totally honest, I am not even sure what I want because this is the first time I have run a project this way.

In the end, I told many of the students that this is no different than any other project – I want to be impressed. This time I don’t want to be impressed with the deliverable. I want to be impressed by what they have learned using 20% of their class time to pursue something that they are interested in. I will post a follow-up after the presentations next week.

Euro2012 to Learn Math

I am a big soccer fan and there has been some debate on whether Cristiano Ronaldo should have been one of the first four penalty kick takers. I used to coach soccer at the high school level, but never was in a penalty shootout so I’m not sure what I would. The coach of Portugal has some valid reasons, saving the best player for last, for having Ronaldo kick last, but statistically is that the best option?

I don’t teach math so I may not have a clue about what I am talking about here, but I think that this could turn into a project. Any student that is a soccer enthusiast could research the length (number of rounds) of penalty kick shootouts in major tournaments the last 10 – 30 years. The can determine the average number of rounds a shootout lasted to determine where the best player should kick. If the majority of shootouts last 5 rounds, than maybe the Portugese coach was right. If not, maybe he needs a student to run some statistics for him.

I don’t know the answer to this problem….but that is why I hope a student would be interested in tackling this problem.