Building Community Through Project Based Learning With Freebie


Gear up for a great year with this back to school project based learning unit. I've included community building activities and a Back to School Snow Cone Party idea. I've included a FREEBIE!

Building a Class Community Through Project Based Learning

It's the beginning of the school year and your goal is to create a positive atmosphere and community in your classroom. It's important to set the tone at the beginning of the year so your class meetings go well, your students work productively in collaborative groups, and your students can resolve conflicts.



Gear up for a great year with this back to school project based learning unit. I've included community building activities and a Back to School Snow Cone Party idea. I've included a FREEBIE!

So, why don't you begin the year with a Project Based Learning unit that helps solve your worries. Through project based learning, students learn how to cooperate and collaborate, problem solve, and communicate. All of these are important skills your students need throughout their lives.

Here are a few tips and ideas for building your class community through Project Based Learning:

1. Create an Avatar

This activity allows students to learn about their classmates and how they represent themselves. There are different apps and websites for creating avatars. I used a simple website that lets you choose your gender, hair, eyes, lips, nose, and clothes. I thought AvatarMaker got pretty close. After creating the avatar, students can import the image into a word document or glue on construction paper. Then, add words that describes the student. The words can be written or typed in fun colors and fonts. Students can go around and guess who the avatar represents. These avatars can be used on name tags and used with activities throughout the year. This activity is a great way for students to get to know each other and how they represent themselves.

Gear up for a great year with this back to school project based learning unit. I've included community building activities and a Back to School Snow Cone Party idea. I've included a FREEBIE!

2. Google Map Scavenger Hunt

Students can learn how their classmates spent their summer. I've blogged about using Google maps in an earlier post. Students can enter a landmark they visited during the summer. It can be a landmark from a vacation or one located in his or her city. Then, students enter the url from Google Maps, and create a QR code. The QR Codes can be placed around the classroom for students to visit. Students can even work in collaborative groups to decide on their ideal vacation destination. Then, do the same with the the QR codes.

Gear up for a great year with this back to school project based learning unit. I've included community building activities and a Back to School Snow Cone Party idea. I've included a FREEBIE!

Other community building activities include developing your class motto, brainstorming different community or school service projects, and activities in which your students see what they have in common. (I Have...Who Has... or Find Someone Who Has...)

Gear up for a great year with this back to school project based learning unit. I've included community building activities and a Back to School Snow Cone Party idea. I've included a FREEBIE!     Gear up for a great year with this back to school project based learning unit. I've included community building activities and a Back to School Snow Cone Party idea. I've included a FREEBIE!

3. Back to School Snow Cone Party

As a culminating activity in the unit, your students can plan a Back to School Snow Cone party. They can plan on what and how much they need to purchase and invitations or e-vites. Believe it or not, it is not expensive to host a snow cone party. There are other factors that can be included like posters and brochures about the school. Veteran students can even volunteer as guides for new students.

Gear up for a great year with this back to school project based learning unit. I've included community building activities and a Back to School Snow Cone Party idea. I've included a FREEBIE!

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Gear up for a great year with this back to school project based learning unit. I've included community building activities and a Back to School Snow Cone Party idea. I've included a FREEBIE!



5 comments

  1. This sounds like so much fun! Forgive me if this is an ignorant question...but when during the day would students work on something like this? I always feel like it's so hard to stop the regular routine of workstations, etc. Are they just doing these activities during that time?

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  2. Love these ideas, Sandy! The kids would LOVE to make their own avatar. Heck, I even enjoy it :)
    Julie
    The Techie Teacher

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  3. These are great ideas!! I know my students would have blast with all these activities (especially making their own avatar)!

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  4. I pinned your avatar idea so that I can come back to this - my 3rd graders would love this! Also, I was so happy to read your post, as I am planning to integrate more PBL in my classroom this year! I really appreciated all of your helpful information!

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  5. I'll pin these ideas. So great--love the interactivity. Plus, the community building can't be beat! I'll share with my faculty, too!
    Thanks!

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