I have used this framework for projects that involve many students over a long period of time, but there is no reason why it couldn't be adapted for shorter courses with fewer students. I have also used the framework with all levels from low to advance. However, depending on the level the project outcomes will need to be adapted to suit them. Below you will be able to see the framework, and below that you will see a short explanation of each point.
Experience: I always look forward to this stage, as this is where the students participate in an activity linked to the overall project theme. For example, I recently finished a project on special needs, so I took the students to work with and meet people with special needs. The experience doesn't necessarily have to be outside the confines of the classroom, just as long as they are experiencing something tangible.
Collaborate: On completion of the experience, it is time for the students to get to work. They will have to collaborate together in order to complete the project objectives, whether they be to create a presentation, website, model or video. The students will have to come together and meet to decide how best to complete the project tasks.
Produce: At this stage the students are producing what they need to meet the project requirements. I like my students to make websites using Weebly, or Wikis, as they are able to learn new skills and share their work with the world. Displaying their work on a website means the students can track their progress by uploading pictures of meetings or activities they do outside of the classroom. It also provides the teacher with evidence of learning which can be used for assessment.
Share: Whether the students produce a model, presentation, poster, website, or video, I like to create a showcase day where they are able to share their work with the other groups. It's a good chance to get different levels or classes together to see what each group has done.
Reflect: Lastly, I ask the students to write a reflective essay on the whole project experience. I ask them to think about what they have done; what they have learned; what was good; what was bad, and what they would do differently next time. Reflective essays are a great way to help students to think about what they have achieved and how they could improve upon certain aspects next time.
I hope the framework above comes in useful for some of you out there. Do get in touch if you have a different one that you use, or if you use or adapt this. I'd love to get your feedback.
Jonassen, D. H. (1999). Designing constructivist learning environments. In C. M. Reigeluth (Ed.), Instructional-design theories and models: A new paradigm of instructional theory Vol. II (pp. 215–239)
Williams, S. J. (2014). The Project-based Learning Framework.