Avonworth School District (http://www.avonworth.k12.pa.us/pages/Avonworth_School_District), in conjunction with LUMA Institute (https://www.luma-institute.com/) and the Pittsburgh Center for the Arts (http://center.pfpca.org/), will deliver a three-day, peer learning experience that combines Project-Based Learning (PBL), Design Thinking and Arts Integration–July 19-21, 2016. Participants will bring an initial project idea and leave with a developed idea for a PBL solution. The workshop will equip teachers across the region to scale innovative practices that do not require a large budget to implement. Teachers will build skills and knowledge to develop interdisciplinary, project-based lessons/units to engage students in meaningful learning and in applying 21st century skills. Participants will learn about LUMA’s modular approach to Design Thinking as a driver of PBL. They will also learn how to integrate the Arts in the context of PBL. Because of the interdisciplinary nature of PBL, we encourage teaching teams, but individuals will gain the tools they will need to implement authentic PBL units.
This professional development opportunity for educators will occur in a hands-on workshop format. The workshop will be divided into smaller peer learning groups (primary grades, elementary grades, middle school, and high school). Participants will also have many opportunities to network and learn from all of the participants (regardless of their grade-level association). The first day will feature teaching artists from various mediums (visual arts, improvisation, dance/movement, etc.) conducting mini-workshops to introduce the Arts as potential activities that could enhance various stages of PBL. The teaching artists will be available for “office hour” consultation on subsequent days as the participants develop PBL solutions under the guidance of experienced PBL teachers from Avonworth and Design Thinking instructor/practitioners from LUMA Institute. The last day of the workshop will feature a culminating gallery walk/reception that will showcase all of the PBL solutions developed during the workshops. The reception event will provide additional opportunities for reflection and networking. A Professional Learning Community (PLC) will spring from the institute and will provide participants opportunities to share their PBL ideas through a cloud-based format and through ongoing Google Hangout discussions.
A nominal non-refundable fee of $50 will be charged to secure a commitment to attend the three-day summer institute. A lite breakfast and lunch will be provided each day. This innovative regional teacher workshop is made possible by the generous support of the Grable Foundation.
Act 48 hours will be granted to those who complete the full three-day workshop.