After a stimulating discussion at this week’s #ellchat and with the great links provided by @cybraryman1, I would like to dedicate this post to PBL as an alternative for traditional homework. This post is also an extension to my earlier post on homework (here).
Traditional homework has caused so much misery so far in terms of its length and worth. Teachers need to grow out of archaic ideas and become innovative. A lengthy homework is not only discouraging but is also a meaningless. Shorter versions of homework focused on learning, in my view, are more effective. However, even these cannot be used for evaluation as I feel it is quite an unreliable method.
Homework can be used as a tool for meaningful evaluation if we adopt PBL. Homework can be given in the form of a project. This method, I feel, has the following advantages:
- Practical application of the theoretical concepts.
- Students will actually know what they are doing. Evaluation can be done based on the assessment of their project work and its presentation.
- Involving parents. I’m sure parents would love to see their kids “enjoy” their homework and human curiosity would involve them too.
- PBL homework can be given as an individual task or as a group work. This promotes interaction, exchange of ideas and formation of new questions; in a word, collaboration!
I tried PBL for homework this week with my camp students and they reminded me of their homework before I asked for it the next day. Not just that, they loved it and wanted more (click here for a slice of it). We ended up extending the science lab workshop by a day with their parents coming in too!
Let’s get innovative! A perfect world beckons… Hakuna matata!
What do you think?