I’m all for the ideas of project-based learning in theory. However, I have trouble with three scenarios that are problematic for project-based-learning in general. I’m curious how you solve these issues?
There is always some percentage of kids who are less creatively minded than others, so much so that they are simply not interested in “making”. It is nice to buy into the idea that “everyone would love to make something” but I’ve seen that that’s simply not always the case. Finding a project that appeals to them is sometimes impossibly difficult- what do you do?
Some kids are really passionate about one aspect (let’s use for example, drawing). So in any project they create, (let’s say, an interactive story in scratch), their focus is 99% of the time focused on creating nice visuals and animations. That narrow focus makes it difficult to have those kids explore other aspects (in scratch, lets say, the more complex programming blocks). Fine for a hobby learner, but in an educational context, problematic. How do you encourage exploration for narrowly-focused learners?
In a school environment, learners are tested on skills they need to acquire. At the same time, project based learning suffers if it funnels a learner’s experience towards a specific set of skills- it becomes less about working on a project so much as it is completing a very constrained assignment. How do you balance having kids learn specific skills while still retaining substantial freedom to explore?