High school project

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1 Context

(High school: 14 – 18 years old)

This project, described by Proulx (2004), has been made in 1996 by a team of 4 students of a course named "Projects in Community organization, given by Norman Gilles

This course is based on the realization of community projects by the students. An integrating topic is released and students, in teams of 4 or 5, must carry out a particular project in adequacy with the integrating topic.

The project describes here was based around the integrating topic "Urgency of tenderness", topic of a play which proposes a reflexion on the common lived experiences, needs for attention and tenderness. Four different projects were born form this content which has as a common point to bring students how to control various elements of the integrating topic. And, in a wider perspective, these projects allowed learners to practice their knowledge (declaratives and procedurales) learnt in others lessons.

In this example, the project consist in the production of an guide of animation, inspired from an feminist analyse on the emotional dependence and violence on love relationship in teenagers beetween 12 ans 18 years old. This is a team production project, with an integrating topic.

The project consists of the drafting of the guide of animation. It contains a short talk of problematic, suggestions of workshops, a guide of the coordinator, a questionnaire of evaluation of the workshops of intervention and formation and a mediagraphy.

The objectives of the project are to provide a tool of intervention of groups to the speakers having to face these problems.

The objectives of learning are to allow students:

  1. to acquire new knowledge on various elements to be taken into account in the organization of community services
  2. to develop and apply effective strategies and methods of intervention in the organization of community services
  3. to develop a sensitivity to the various needs for people in difficulties or distress

2 Preparation of the project

  1. With the first meeting, the teacher explains the fondments of the course and why the pedagogy of project-based learning is most suitable. It clarifies the teaching intentions by presenting the various objectives and endeavours to make them divide by the majority of learners.
  2. Thereafter, the teacher presents the play and request the learners, by group, to proceed to the choice of a project of intervention while taking as a starting point the messages and characters contained in the play. At this time learners have decided to choose a population of teenagers from 12 to 18 years.
  3. once the project stopped, it was necessary to make a planning of realisation, step by step. The team (one among other, for example) thus has :
    1. to define the problems of the teenager, mainly in the plan of the relations in love. Exercise made starting from the play itself and from reference works.
    2. describes the target customers more precisely.
    3. decided to produce a guide of animation to provide an additional tool of intervention to the people confonted with these problems
    4. written a list of tasks to be achieved and roles to distribute to carry out the project in the long term.
    5. to decide a calendar of meetings between the members of the team
    6. agreed of a way of diffusion of the guide.

3 Implementation of the project

  1. Common readings on the problems to release the key ideas being used to make background for the guide.
  2. In the second time, according to the role which was fallen to them, students put themselves in the search of specific information, or have to meet people resources, consultation of summaries and documents, rédaction and sending of questionnaires at organizations to know the needs as regards tools for intervention for the studied problems.
  3. Then division of the writing: each person has a part to do.
  4. Periodical meetings of all the members to ensure coherence the guide.

4 Assessement of the project

All in all, the evaluation of the project has three stages.

  • Preparation and writing of the guide of animation by the team
  • Presentation of the project to the group-class. The team could thus benefit from the remarks to improve some last details concerning the guide.
  • Evaluation of the project: each team submitted an evaluation report of her project bearing on the contents and the impact of the project like on the operation of the staff.

5 Layout of the project

Once carried out and evaluated, the guide of animation was given to the community organizations primarily active in the network of health and the social services.

6 References

Proulx, J. (2004). Apprentissage par projet. Presses de l'université du québec