Sunday, June 12, 2016

feedback received

Today I received feedback for my driving question from Doriana Palumbo and I'm posting it here because I really like the way she explains her point of views, it's a constructive review and I take her reflections into account.
I'm adding my response to her comments, as if we were discussing and I wish we could.

Firstly, I totally agree with you when you say that is not easy to implement PBL, but I strongly believe in its positive outcomes, in terms of learning motivation, deeper learning process and improvement of students ' skills and competencies.
Nothing worthy is easy for sure, that's why I've kept trying to improve myself during the last 3 years that  I started experimenting with pbl. It's a pity that neither the school infrastructure, nor colleagues or timetable supports us so far and that's when it becomes even more difficult. 
Secondly, you have consciously applied PBL components to your course design, but I think that you should plan better the following parts :
- data collection : can they only search information from their parents ' practices? Why not providing them also with further data sources, like local authorities or producers? They could get inspired by different agricultural practices.
I thought that we were not supposed to give many details on the plan. What you suggest is what I had in mind. Students cannot have an overview of the topic else how. 
- driving question : does your driving question involve any challenging tasks? I teach German so I don't know what goal you think they should  achieve..  maybe pollution produced by animals? You should get to the point with your driving question, because I think it's important for them to know what to focus on. For example, imagining you are an inspector and you have to prove the sustainability of our local agriculture,  what kind of analysis would you make? Which adjustment would be necessary? 
The whole teaching subject that lasts a school year includes many different points to focus, so there could be different tasks, and different driving questions related to the basic big idea. I love your proposal.
- student driven learning : in my opinion,  this is the hardest part to accomplish. I would say to let them decide if farmers are able or not to improve the soil and respect the environment. We are used to foresee everything,  but I think we sometimes understate their skills. Let them come up with a solution on their own. 

That's my usual practice. And I'm always amazed of what they can imagine. 

Thank you Doriana!

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