Invent A Game!

Posted by Nathan Hatt on 5/15/2019 4:00:00 PM

In this edition of the PBL Corner, we continue our ongoing conversation featuring the many voices of A2 STEAM. Part three of our series will focus on the our Field Day project, a phyical education unit that has been in the development for almost two years.

The idea to design a field day started with the notion that older students in a K-8 building benefit from the opportunity to act as mentors for the younger grades. Over time, this project has developed into something truly spectacular. Embedded in the process for students are iterations of critique and revision. What has helped this project to grow is educator Jason Willard's own revision along the way.

In educator Mike Kaechele's article "Critique and Revision Isn’t Just for Students" some tenets of revision are outlined, all of which are evident in Mr. Willard's process:

  • Set Clear Expectations
  • Offer Multiple Modes
  • Model How to Receive Feedback
  • Validate Student Voice
  • Handle Unfair Criticism
  • Demonstrate Vulnerability and Humility
  • Become a Warm Demander

I had the opportunity to interview Mr. Willard, his students, and the audience for the project this week. Here is what they had to say:

Mr. Kaechele concludes his article with the following passage:

"Critique and revision isn’t just a protocol to improve students’ final products in a project. Critique and revision of everything in your class builds a strong culture of trust as students learn the skills of disagreeing with authority in respectful and productive ways. It teaches students to have a critical lens, but with a bent toward solutions. Respectful critique trains our next generation appropriate ways to change the world!"

As PBL educators, we all must be responsive leaders. Mr. Willard shows us a good example of how we model these expectations through authentic project work.