A Note: A Former Student Recalls the Value of Her Project-Based Learning Experience

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This will be a rather busy week, so the next part of the “Building an Ethic of Caring in the Classroom” will likely be delayed. As a quick preview, the post will explore the nature of how a classroom, at times, sets itself up to have winners meaning there has to be losers, and the dire implications that can have on a student’s education. See parts 1, 2, 3,  and 4 by clicking the linked numbers.

Today I am simply sharing a note I received from a former student, Tiffany, who was part of my first project-based learning (PBL) immersive classroom (The Studio) with my friend and colleague, Nic Carroll. Her note is a reminder why teaching is such a rewarding occupation, and it certainly champions what PBL as an instructional approach may inspire. Tiffany is a recent graduate of the Georgia Institute of Technology. Enjoy!

Hi Carroll and Jones-y,

Before I begin, I am typing this on my slow, laggy phone, so I apologize (particularly to Coach Jones) for any typos…

I just wanted to send you a little note to thank you both AGAIN for being such an influential people early in my career. I know I have thanked you both before, but I will be eternally grateful for the impact you made in my life.

PBL completely changed my life aspirations early on, teaching me to pursue my passions, regardless of what the world was telling me. PBL allowed me to explore my creative side, transforming PowerPoint presentations into memorable experiences and creating websites and logos, early in my ‘career’.

On Wednesday, I interviewed for a graphic design position that also includes PowerPoint design/animation. Let’s just say that PBL came up, and I found myself reminiscing back to the moments with PBL that truly changed my life.

Fast forward to today… I was just offered the position a few hours ago and am so excited. While I have loved and will continue the freelance life as the Founder/CEO of TDang Designs LLC, I am super pumped to be learning and working under someone else. And as I celebrate with my friends and family, I just wanted to share my life update with 2 people that have been an integral part in shaping who I am today.

I can’t thank you both enough…

So much love,
Tiffany

No, Tiffany, thank you!

Student Voices: Intern Edition “WBL is What You Make of It”

Student Voices

by Andy C.

“I’ve been yearning for the experiences and professional growth I’m getting everyday at [GCPS TV].”

When you think of the term intern, what immediately pops into your head? To me, I think of someone running around the office tending to the needs of senior staffers, getting their coffee, copying meeting agendas and performing the lowest of tasks in the office. For me and my experiences, that could not be farther from the truth. I work for Gwinnett County Public Schools’ EMMY award-winning educational access TV station, GCPS TV, producing long-form programming and timely Focus Moment news stories as well as assisting in live and live-to-tape in-studio and on-location productions. For as long as I can remember, I’ve been yearning for the experiences and professional growth I’m getting everyday at the station. As I begin to reflect on my past year at GCPS TV, I realize how grateful I am to be apart of such an amazing team of industry professionals. Continue reading

Student Voices: Intern Edition “The Benefits of WBL”

Student Voices

by Constance S.

“I’d say the real-world experience and accountability were large benefits of this program.”

It began with class enrollment for my senior year. The thought of “What in the world should I choose?” seemed to echo in my mind as I skimmed the list of courses. I pondered over them; would they be beneficial towards my life post-high school? None of them seemed to be what I was looking for. It wasn’t until I heard about an internship that I felt hopeful about my electives. If I didn’t make it in: fine. I’d just have to learn piano for my last year of high school. Continue reading

Student Voices: Intern Edition “Alignment of the Stars”

Student Voices

by Brendan C.

My name is Brendan. I’m a graduating senior at Lanier High School. During this past year, I’ve been taking part in Work-Based Learning, or WBL, a class taught by Dr. Kyle Jones, the author of this blog. This class encourages students to get out into a field of their choice to learn vital skills through a job, internship, or other form of work. To be completely honest, it’s been one of my favorite classes out of the entire four years I’ve been in high school. Continue reading

Next Month: Teacher & Student Voice Series

I’m excited to announce (after a month long hiatus) two series that will be posted in tandem next month:

 

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While I will write a post as part the the ‘Eye Heart Teaching‘ series, most of the posts will be completed by guest writers–both students and teachers.

The ‘Student Voices: Intern Edition‘ series will include entries from my current internship students who are wrapping up their year as industry interns. They’ll reflect on their experiences, the benefits of interning, and may even critique the methods of the internship course itself.

The ‘Eye Heart Teaching‘ series will include entries from colleagues who will share everything from their recent research to evolving teaching and professional philosophies to sharing narratives about their favorite moments in their classrooms in 2017-18.

The first posts will be up by the first week of May. Stay tuned and be sure to share using the hashtag #EyeHeartTeaching and #StudentVoices