The Virginia Initiative for Science Teaching and Achievement (VISTA) provides high-quality professional development for teachers and administrators to enhance the quality of their science instructional programs. One emphasis of this program is helping teachers learn to implement Problem-Based Learning in the elementary science classroom. Problem-Based Learning (PBL) has the potential to produce significant positive outcomes for students, such as increased student engagement, and opportunities for in-depth critical thinking . Teachers find PBL challenging because it does take additional time for planning and material acquisition, but experience has shown that the benefits outweigh these challenges. Setting clear goals, identifying specific learning objectives, and developing big questions that tie these together help increase the success of the unit. Additionally, administrators can help teachers succeed in implementing a Problem-Based Learning unit by understanding the dynamic nature of the PBL environment, providing flexibility with unit pacing, and setting aside time for refining, reflection, and revision of the unit.
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Phillips, C.; Zimmerman, R.; and Martin, A.
"Experiences with Problem-Based Learning: Virginia Initiative for Science Teaching and Achievement,"
Journal of Mathematics and Science: Collaborative Explorations: Vol. 15
, Article 5.
Available at: https://scholarscompass.vcu.edu/jmsce_vamsc/vol15/iss1/5