EdTech 542 Week 3


This has been a good week for me to understand and explore the components of writing a driving question.  For the forum discussion this week we were asked to describe what makes a good driving quesion.  In an Edutopia article by Andrew Miller (2011), a driving question should help initiate and focus the inquiry, not solve the world’s problems. The goal is to keep students engaged and focused. The driving question “captures and communicates the purpose of the project in a succinct question, the teacher and student should be clear on what the overall project is as well as its purpose. Ultimately the driving question is for the student, it creates interest and a feeling of challenge.

As a teacher and also a reading specialist aide, I have had many opportunities to create good objectives and tie them to standards.  I almost feel like  PBL driving questions are similar but on a larger, more comprehensive scale.  I really enjoyed the Driving Question Tubric because it made it a little easier to break apart and identify each of the critical pieces of the question.

I was also asked to identify the characteristics of a quality driving question and explain how my driving question meets those criteria.

Criteria (based on Bie.org) How my project meets these criteria
More engaging for students 3rd grade students LOVE having the freedom to create, this project gives them not only something to “think about” in terms of the question and subquestions but also the freedom to be creative (something that often gets lost).
Improves learning Students will put their new knowledge of animal habitats to use by creating their new ultimate animal and how those things (camouflage, habitat, diet, etc.) help an animal survive.
Builds success skills for college, career, and life As per the 21st century skills, this PBL involves communication and collaboration with peers and adults, critical thinking, creativity and innovation, and transfer of knowledge to other activities.
Helps address standards Studying animal habitats is required for all 3rd graders across the U.S. and in CCSS.
Provides opportunities for students to use technology Students will have multiple opportunities to use technology both in the research and in the presentation if they so choose.
Makes teaching more enjoyable and rewarding Anytime a student has the opportunity to take what they know and connect it something new in a way they enjoy (and of their own choice), they be engaged and having fun…the greatest reward a teacher can have.
Connects students and schools with communities and the real world Students will be able to do some research for their “ultimate animal” starting on the field trip and questions can be asked to the staff and experts there. Furthermore, this activity will be shared with other classes within the school and published on the class Edmodo site for schools around the globe to enjoy.

Miller, A. (2011). How to write effective driving questions for project-based learning. Retrieved from http://www.edutopia.org/blog/pbl-how-to-write-driving-questions-andrew-miller

Why Project Based Learning (PBL)? (n.d.). Retrieved from http://bie.org/about/why_pbl


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