two teachers point at two board with single word descriptions of high-quality PBL

During our PBL World conference June 20-22, we put up black posterboards on the wall of the gym where the keynotes were happening, with fluorescent markers nearby. The prompt: Write down one word to describe high-quality PBL. I thought the responses were wonderfully diverse, fascinating, and pretty much covered it well. So here they are:

Agency
Agile
Artistic
Authentic
Beautiful
Bridging
Challenging
Change-Making
Child-Centered
Collaborative
Compelling
Connected
Connective
Creative
Dedication
Dynamic
Effective
Empowering
Engagement
Epic
Exciting
Fun
Generative
Groundbreaking
Human-Springboarding
Impactful
Imperative
Inclusive
Innovative
Inspirational
Inspiring
Invigorating
Iterative
Journey
Joyful
Launches
Learner-Centered
Liberating
Life-Affirming
Meaningful
New
Pivotal
Productive
Real
Reflective
Relevant
Rigor
Sticky
Thought-Provoking
Transformational
Transformative
Woke

(Naturally I couldn’t resist writing a few words of my own on this list, too, and the keynote speaker on Thursday, PBL Champion Carlos Moreno, gave me the idea to write “woke, ” so credit where credit is due!)


Got some more words to add to this list? Please enter them in the comments below.

John Larmer, Editor in Chief
John is editor in chief at PBLWorks, where he has helped create professional development workshops and PBL curriculum materials. He writes for and edits the PBL Blog, and is the co-author of several books on PBL.