EDTC 6104 Community Engagement Project – Supporting Learning with Project-Based Learning and Nearpod

This summer as part of my EDTC 6104 course I have had the opportunity to learn more about ISTE Coaching Standard 3 and how it connects with my work as a coach and supporting educators and students. One of the elements of our course this summer has been to develop a professional learning opportunity that can hopefully be presented at a conference of our choosing. As I thought about this opportunity I really wanted my presentation to be relevant to the work that is happening in my district. I wanted to develop something that could hopefully be utilized with teachers that I work with and also presented at a conference for other educators to experience. So after some internal discussions with myself and some reflection I found that I kept wandering back to exploring Project-Based Learning (PBL) and the digital tool, Nearpod. 

I choose to present something on PBL and Nearpod for a couple reasons. One of the main reasons was that many of the secondary schools in my district have started thinking more about how to incorporate PBL into their instruction. Another determining factor was that our district just recently purchased Nearpod for all of our secondary teachers. Therefore I really wanted to focus my presentation on Project-Based Learning (PBL), Nearpod and Remote Learning. My goal for this presentation is to help give educators a better understanding of what PBL and Nearpod are and how the two things can work together in order to support student learning. 

As I started planning my presentation I knew right away that I wanted to be able to deliver the presentation utilizing Nearpod. This way participants would get to experience Nearpod from the student perspective and I would have the opportunity to explore it as a teacher so that I can be better prepared to answer questions. I also used this time to explore some of the resources that Nearpod has on their website for PD. I also revisited many of the PBL resources provided by PBLworks.org during a conference I attended this past June. One of the other resources that has been helpful for my preparation has been the book, Project Based Teaching: How to Create Rigorous and Engaging Learning Experiences by Suzie Boss and John Larmer. 

Right now my plan is to provide a 50 minute presentation at NCCE in the spring of 2021, if my proposal is accepted. I am also planning on offering a modified version of this presentation to educators in my district. Within my district the presentation will mainly focus on Nearpod and PBL and working with educators to design opportunities for incorporating those two things into their lessons. I also plan on working closely with some teachers in order to gather evidence of PBL and Nearpod use in the classroom including student artifacts. These would all be incorporated into my presentation for NCCE. 

This work and presentation directly relates to ISTE Coaching Standard 3 in the following ways.

  • 3a: Establish trusting and respectful coaching relationships that encourage educators to explore new instructional strategies. 
    • I plan on starting the presentation by building in common language and understanding. That way everyone is starting from a fairly level playing field and thus may be more inclined to explore the resources and ask questions.
  • 3b:Partner with educators to identify digital learning content that is culturally relevant, developmentally appropriate and aligned to content standards. 
    • Participants will be asked to use their current curriculum and standards in order to think about what design elements of PBL can be incorporated and how the Nearpod features can support that. 
  • 3c: Partner with educators to evaluate the efficacy of digital learning content and tools to inform procurement decisions and adoption.
    • There will be time throughout the presentation for educators to engage in with the Nearpod platform in order to evaluate if it is the right tool for their classrooms and to get more comfortable with how to use the platform.
  • 3d: Personalize support for educators by planning and modeling the effective use of technology to improve student learning.
    • The design of the PD utilizes Nearpod so I will be able to model how to use it as the teachers and participants will be able to see the platform from the student perspective. This will allow for participants to account for places where students may get stuck or ask questions.

Below is a link to materials that I plan to use and reference during my presentation and a video overview of my presentation.

My hope is that this presentation will be something that can be added to in the future with more classroom examples of how educators are using PBL and Nearpod. I am happy with where it is at currently and can’t wait to share it with other educators in my district so that I can add their experience to the presentation.


Boss, S., & Larmer, J. (2018). Project based teaching: How to create rigorous and engaging learning experiences. ASCD ; Buck Institute for Education.

Boss, S., Larmer, J., Mergendoller, J. R., & Buck Institute for Education. (2015). PBL for 21st century success: Teaching critical thinking, collaboration, communication, and creativity. Buck Institute for Education.

Home-Based Learning Resources—Nearpod. (n.d.). Home-Based Learning Resources. Retrieved July 17, 2020, from https://sites.google.com/nearpod.com/coronavirus/educator-resources/nearpod

ISTE Standards for Coaches | ISTE. (n.d.). Retrieved July 22, 2020, fromhttps://www.iste.org/standards/for-coaches

PBLWorks. (n.d.). PBLWorks. Retrieved July 17, 2020, from https://www.pblworks.org/

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