Project Based Learning: Deeper Content Knowledge Through Ask an Expert

An important element in Project Based Learning or PBL is to develop deeper learning of the content. In doing this, I provide students with many types of resources. One of the most important resources is connecting with an expert in the field. When students ask an expert they learn more about the world around them and gain valuable life experience.

Help your students deepen their knowledge of various topics by participating in Ask an Expert. This project based learning experience is a great learning tool! This post gives students seven manageable steps to conduct interviews, helping them develop a deeper learning of a real-life problem or challenge. The ideas presented at this post will work for your elementary, middle school, or high school classroom or homeschool students. {2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th grade}

I have had experts speak to my students as a whole group and have encouraged students to conduct personal interviews. Interviews take lots of preparation so the interviews will be successful. I have a few suggestions for your students so they will feel confident when speaking to adults.

1. Do your research! 

Never go into an interview without knowing about the subject. Doing research helps the interviewer come up with good questions to learn even more.

Help your students deepen their knowledge of various topics by participating in Ask an Expert. This project based learning experience is a great learning tool! This post gives students seven manageable steps to conduct interviews, helping them develop a deeper learning of a real-life problem or challenge. The ideas presented at this post will work for your elementary, middle school, or high school classroom or homeschool students. {2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th grade}

2. Contact the person ahead of time

Whether you are going to a business or someone's home, contact the person first. Set up a good time for the interview. If the person cannot be interviewed in person, you may need to do a phone interview or even Skype, FaceTime or Google Hangout.

3. Prepare questions ahead of time

After researching, write down between 10-15 good questions. Don't ask yes or no questions. Ask questions that are open-ended so the person has an opportunity to elaborate. Practice asking questions with a friend or your parents.

Help your students deepen their knowledge of various topics by participating in Ask an Expert. This project based learning experience is a great learning tool! This post gives students seven manageable steps to conduct interviews, helping them develop a deeper learning of a real-life problem or challenge. The ideas presented at this post will work for your elementary, middle school, or high school classroom or homeschool students. {2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th grade}


4. Be prepared and on time for the interview


Bring your notebook, pencil and questions. If you are recording the interview, bring the device. Always make sure to get permission if you want to record or video. And, make sure to be on time.


5. Be courteous and professional during the interview

  • Be friendly and relax during the interview.
  • Dress nicely to show that you are serious about the interview.
  • Give the person a chance to answer the questions without going on to the next question.
  • Listen carefully as you take notes. Feel free to ask follow-up questions.
  • Sometimes one of your questions may already be answered during the interview, so don't ask it again.
  • Ask the person if there's anything else she/he would like to add.
  • Thank the person for taking time to be interviewed.


Help your students deepen their knowledge of various topics by participating in Ask an Expert. This project based learning experience is a great learning tool! This post gives students seven manageable steps to conduct interviews, helping them develop a deeper learning of a real-life problem or challenge. The ideas presented at this post will work for your elementary, middle school, or high school classroom or homeschool students. {2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th grade}

6. Review your notes

Review your notes right after your interview. You may remember some information that you didn't write down.

7. Write a thank-you note

Follow-up the interview with a thank-you note.

If you enjoyed this post about ask an expert, you'll also enjoy the other PBL ideas at my Teachers Pay Teachers store. You can view all of my Project Based Learning resources here.

Help your students deepen their knowledge of various topics by participating in Ask an Expert. This project based learning experience is a great learning tool! This post gives students seven manageable steps to conduct interviews, helping them develop a deeper learning of a real-life problem or challenge. The ideas presented at this post will work for your elementary, middle school, or high school classroom or homeschool students. {2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th grade}



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Hands On Math Linky

Math Games

There are so many skills students can learn with hands-on math games. I've given you samples of games you can use at your math stations.I love having games available in the classroom. Students learn so many skills when they play strategy games, board games and simulations. They are perfect for struggling learners because students are using their senses and higher level thinking skills. It's a wonderful way to present concepts and address differentiation in the classroom. Stronger students can even peer tutor.

1. By playing games, students learn and practice math skills. Students are able to demonstrate their knowledge and understanding of the concepts.

2. By playing games, students learn life and social skills. They can learn critical thinking, teamwork, to cooperate with others, sportsmanship, and communication.

3. By playing games, students are more apt to retain the information. Students not only learn math concepts, they learn skills in reading, following directions, and vocabulary.

4. Games are motivating! Students don't even realize they are learning when they play games.

5. Games are fun for all ages. Many games are still fun to play no matter how old you are!

Here are a few math games that have a spring theme. These are perfect for math stations:

1. Ice Cream Scoops - Just write numbers on cards. Students will take turns turning over a card and subtract it from 99. Then, continue subtracting from each difference. Write smaller numbers on the cards for easier problems.
There are so many skills students can learn with hands-on math games. I've given you samples of games you can use at your math stations.
2. Double Bee's - This is a fun game with multi-steps. Students will roll the dice. (You can use blank dice to add numbers 4-9.) Multiply the two numbers. Add the two numbers and then add those totals. Find the answers on the bee hive. 

There are so many skills students can learn with hands-on math games. I've given you samples of games you can use at your math stations.
3. Flower Power and Sweet Treats - You can write your own problems for these games. Make sure to laminate all of these so you can use them over and over. Students get a different experience every time they play. Use erasable markers so you can just erase the problems and write new ones.

There are so many skills students can learn with hands-on math games. I've given you samples of games you can use at your math stations.
4. Roll and Cover and Catch the Bug - I love using themes for games. You can incorporate games into all curriculum areas. Catch the Bug involves working with coordinates and the flower themed Roll and Cover is also played with dice.

There are so many skills students can learn with hands-on math games. I've given you samples of games you can use at your math stations.
You can find all of these games in one product. Or, you can purchase a year of themes in one bundle. And, they are discounted just for this linky! Just click on the images below.
There are so many skills students can learn with hands-on math games. I've given you samples of games you can use at your math stations.
There are so many skills students can learn with hands-on math games. I've given you samples of games you can use at your math stations.
















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Implementing Successful Project Based Learning Units

When implementing a successful Project Based Learning unit, there are several questions you need to ask yourself. What is your overall goal for the unit? What skills do you want to cover in the project? Does the project fit into your curriculum? And, is your unit really project based? Many times commonly used terms such as inquiry based learning, authentic learning, problem-solving... are confused with actual project based learning.

When implementing Project Based Learning, teachers and students can think about different types of challenges or problems.


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Exploring the Life Cycle of a Plant: Engaging Springtime Fun

It's spring and flowers are beginning to bloom. It's warming up and your students are anxious to go outside and explore. This is the perfect time of year to focus on life cycles, or - more specifically - the life cycle of a plant

Your 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th grade elementary classroom or home school students are going to love learning about the life cycle of a plant with this springtime resource. It has many engaging components they're sure to love! Help your science lesson come to life with the QR codes, video, PowerPoint, vocabulary, and nature hunt ideas included in this blog post. Any time you're teaching about life cycles, this resource will be a huge hit! {first, second, third, fourth graders}

Nature Hunt

Take your students outside on a nature hunt to identify the parts of the plant. Students can record their observations. As students learn about the life cycle of a plant, they can color and cut out each phase and put them in the correct order.

Your 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th grade elementary classroom or home school students are going to love learning about the life cycle of a plant with this springtime resource. It has many engaging components they're sure to love! Help your science lesson come to life with the QR codes, video, PowerPoint, vocabulary, and nature hunt ideas included in this blog post. Any time you're teaching about life cycles, this resource will be a huge hit! {first, second, third, fourth graders}

Vocabulary

As students learn vocabulary related to plants, they can create their own mini-book.

Your 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th grade elementary classroom or home school students are going to love learning about the life cycle of a plant with this springtime resource. It has many engaging components they're sure to love! Help your science lesson come to life with the QR codes, video, PowerPoint, vocabulary, and nature hunt ideas included in this blog post. Any time you're teaching about life cycles, this resource will be a huge hit! {first, second, third, fourth graders}

QR Codes

Put QR Code task cards at centers so they can view videos and learn more about plants.

Your 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th grade elementary classroom or home school students are going to love learning about the life cycle of a plant with this springtime resource. It has many engaging components they're sure to love! Help your science lesson come to life with the QR codes, video, PowerPoint, vocabulary, and nature hunt ideas included in this blog post. Any time you're teaching about life cycles, this resource will be a huge hit! {first, second, third, fourth graders}

PowerPoint

This fun interactive PowerPoint explains the parts of the plant, life cycle, seeds, pollination and how plants are useful.

Your 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th grade elementary classroom or home school students are going to love learning about the life cycle of a plant with this springtime resource. It has many engaging components they're sure to love! Help your science lesson come to life with the QR codes, video, PowerPoint, vocabulary, and nature hunt ideas included in this blog post. Any time you're teaching about life cycles, this resource will be a huge hit! {first, second, third, fourth graders}

Video

This Claymation video is a wonderful way for students to understand the life cycle of a plant. These are so easy to create.


For all of these life cycle of a plant activities, drop by my TPT store. You're going to love the life cycle of a plant resource (or the other bundles it's included in)! 

Your 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th grade elementary classroom or home school students are going to love learning about the life cycle of a plant with this springtime resource. It has many engaging components they're sure to love! Help your science lesson come to life with the QR codes, video, PowerPoint, vocabulary, and nature hunt ideas included in this blog post. Any time you're teaching about life cycles, this resource will be a huge hit! {first, second, third, fourth graders}

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