Kat Deaner is the Director of Online Education at the PAST Innovation Lab. She reached out to us with some information about the organization’s upcoming online trainings on problem-based learning.
Welcome Kat! Before we get rolling, why are you a part of this work?
To engage today’s students, it is imperative that we connect student learning with the real world. Educating our children today can no longer be the sole responsibility of schools districts, administrators and teachers. We must involve the community, business and industry to help best prepare our students for the future. One way to do this is planning curriculum through problem-based learning. This class provides a framework and process for you to do just that
Can we step back for a moment, what’s the advantage to teachers of this approach you call Transdisciplinary Problem-Based Learning (TPBL)?
Business and industry has identified several areas that they believe are lacking from their young employees today. They are creativity, critical thinking skills, collaboration and real world experiences. Traditionally most of the focus has been on students learning content but not necessarily knowing how to apply it. TPBL supports the development of these important skills and more.
This four week class provides you with the tools and strategies teachers can take directly back to their classrooms – many of which are transformational ideas and practices to help capture their students attention and integrate real-world application. This process encourages creativity, higher level thinking, and requires students to take ownership of their own learning. We offer either CEU credit or graduate credit.Teachers wishing to receive college credit upon completion of additional deliverables, can receive two non-degree graduate credits issued through DWU at a very affordable price. An additional two weeks is granted for teacher to complete these requirements.
Is this the first year you’ve offered the course?
While this was the first year we have offered this class online, we are in our 15th year working with schools designing strategy and providing professional development. We have worked with over 125 school districts nationally, nearly 3,000 teachers impacting almost 30,000 students. In our first year offering P3 online, we have trained approximately 200 teachers from Ohio, New York and South Dakota. This year we have begun establishing partnerships such as OSLN and have promoted our P3 online class to participants at several local conferences as well as nationally at the STEM NSTA Conference and the ISTE Conference.
What’s one good example of something teachers will learn through the course?
Most of the comments we receive from teachers completing the course is how they have so many ideas and practical resources to take back to their classrooms each week and immediately implement. Our process is designed to be very real and adaptable to all levels and types of learners.
Our course is designed to help teachers break out of the mold of what they are currently doing, and push the boundaries with new ways of thinking, integrating technology in a deliberate and meaningful way and demonstrating that we all are students and need to commit to a plan of lifelong learning.
How do people sign up?
Visit this link to register: https://pastinnovationlab.org/pd/. Classes are offering monthly except the months of July and December.