5. Planning and Preparing

This week we focused on creating a timeline for our project, resources needed for the project, an entry event, and the teaching and learning guide for our website.  The discussion is on how we can integrate other subject matters into our project.

The school I teach at already has an integrated concept in the high school side of the building.  However, none of the subjects really pass subject matters except history and English, which are taught by the same teacher.  None of the teachers gather together and integrate what they are teaching, yet all subjects use an integrated system within their own subject matter.  The philosophy is there, but the knowledge of how to do it is not known about or talked about yet.

As I’ve been working through this project I keep thinking about the science teacher I interact with for my seventh graders.  She would be a great person to start with in integrating subject matters.  It seems it would be natural to include the computer teacher as well on using the different technology tools that will make the project complete.  As the video shows, working cross-subjects is very time consuming and requires teachers that have an interest in project-based learning.  I feel my school would be a perfect fit for integration, it’s a matter of someone stepping up to the plate and bringing the idea to teachers to think about and plan together a project.

I’m thinking the way to implement this within my school would be to start off small, with one or two teachers that have an interest in integration and working on filling in the blanks and adding teachers as needed or as desired.

The project I am working on for this class has a natural integration with either science or social studies depending on the type of population students plan to study.  Social studies has the opportunity to study different cultures and add on to the project by including more culture based questions that need to be answered.  If the teacher wanted to do more of a science based integration, students would have the opportunity to learn more about animals or micro organisms and watch the growth happen under a dish.

It would be easy to include the computer teacher to give ideas on end products and how to make the presentations even more professional.  It would also give the students more time to work on their projects during the school day.

Integrating with other teachers takes time, interest by all parties, and creativity on how to make the projects fit together with different subject matters.  It really makes teaching fun and challenging, to learn beyond the textbook and see how all the subjects fit together and are used in real world situations.

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