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  • What is Project Based Learning?

    In the 21st Century workplace and college, success requires more than basic knowledge of skills and content.  When HR departments from industry, academia, and government are asked to describe the "ideal candidate" coming out of a K-12 system, their responses are remarkably similar year after year:
    • Problem Solver
    • Responsible
    • Works Well With Others
    • Can Work Independently
    • Critical Thinker
    • Confident
    • Manages Time and Resources Effectively
    • Communicates Well With a Variety of People
     

    CHS Project-Based Learning Application 2018-2019
    Below is the link to the application for the Project Based Learning program at Cheltenham High School. Students must complete the application using their Cheltenham School District email account. The PBL program has 66 seats available for incoming freshman. The 10th-grade PBL team consists of 66 seats too. Current 9th-grade PBL students are automatically enrolled in the 10th Grade cohort. Any remaining seats will be filled by new 10th grade students based on availability.    Applicants will receive notification of their status by March 21st. If you have questions, you can contact Charlene Collins at ccollins@cheltenham.org
     


     
     Project Based Learning (PBL) is a teaching method in which students gain knowledge and skills by investigating and responding to authentic, engaging and complex questions, problems or challenges.  With PBL students learn how to take initiative and responsibility, build their confidence, solve problems, work in teams, communicate ideas, and manage themselves more effectively.  By bringing authentic expectations and experiences into the classroom students develop the skills they will need through direct practice and application. 

    In a PBL setting, school is the real world. 



     
    At Cheltenham, we use Stanford University d.school's design thinking model, developed to ensure that creativity and innovation flourish, as our guide and template when having students grapple with authentic challenges.  Through generous financial support from the Avalon Foundation, a philanthropic organization passionately dedicated to the advancement of PBL, Cheltenham has been able to partner with the world's premier PBL school, High Tech High, and a local Philadelphia PBL school, The Workshop School to support our teachers in their professional learning experiences. 
     
    For the 2017-2018 school year, we have opened with a full cohort of 9th grade students engaged with PBL throughout half of their school day.  This cohort of students spends the first four periods of the day in a newly renovated space; made ideal for the needs of PBL with flexible classrooms and needed tooling such as 3D and laser printers, wood working tools, and a CNC router.  Their teachers were embedded with expert PBL practitioners during a weeklong stay at High Tech High in San Diego, followed by an exhaustive amount of additional professional learning time dedicated throughout the 2016-2017 school year, summer of 2017 and ongoing throughout the current school year.  For 2018-2019, 7th grade and 10th grade will each add a new cohort to be followed by 8th grade and 11th grade cohorts in 2019-2020.   

     

Leadership Team

Charlene Collins
Director of Secondary Education
215-517-1327 
Matthew Pimental
Supervisor of Professional Learning and Gifted Education
215-517-1348 
Dr. Brian Reilly
Supervisor of S.T.E.A.M.
215-517-1308 

PBL Teachers

Johanna Cella
Biology PBL 9
Mike Kwas
Social Studies PBL 9
Dr. Brian Smith
English PBL 9
Patrick Fleury
Social Emotional Supports & Special Education
Lyndie Dubbs
English PBL 10
Jerome Lowery
Socials Studies PBL 10
Linsa Sunny
Chemistry PBL 10
Avril Somerville
English PBL 11
Mark Hoff
Social Studies PBL 11
Karen Shaffran
Environmental Science PBL 11

Further Resources