March 2017: The Intersection of Project-based Learning and Project Management

Integrating project management tools into project-based learning

Peg Maddocks, Ph.D, Executive Director
Published on March 21, 2017

Project management meets project-based learning

Watch how schools are integrating project management skills into project-based learning

NapaLearns has proudly supported the implementation of project-based learning in 13 Napa public schools, in partnership with New Tech Network over the last 7 years. At the same time, we introduced the Project Management Toolkit developed by the Project Management Institute Education Foundation(PMIEF) to Napa County Office of Ed Career Tech Education teachers.

The great story is that these skilled educators are now integrating real-world project management tools into their structured project-based learning units. Students feel confident they will be prepared for college and careers, even before completing high school. NapaLearns and the Napa Unified School District are co-hosting PMIEF’s Project Learning Network meeting in April, with attendees from all over the country.


Nepris connects teachers to industry experts

An unexpected guest: bringing authentic learning to the classroom

By Gianna Peralta

The day that teacher Rob Kohl invited a genetic counselor into his classroom was unlike any other his students had experienced.

Rob, a science teacher at Napa High School, was interested in bringing opportunities for deeper learning to his students. After reaching out to NapaLearns to learn more about professional development opportunities and involving the community in his classroom, he learned about a program called Nepris.

Napa County Superintendent, Barbara Nemko, has purchased 10 licenses for teachers, which NapaLearns is helping to distribute. Read more to find out how teachers are being connected to industry experts.

Partners for Projects wants you

NapaLearns’ Partner Jim Krider, of Krider Racing, recently visited teacher Rich Mettler’s science class at River Middle School where students were building and testing model race cars. Students learned about aerodynamics and structural integrity.

“The speaker I had in my room was fantastic,” Rich praised. “Jim Krider was able to discuss a little about his personal life, the science behind building and racing cars, and his personal experiences with racing and implementing the science to build and maintain an aerodynamic race car. It was great for the students, and I would definitely use NapaLearns again as a resource.”

We appreciate local experts sharing their knowledge in our classrooms

Calling all partners!

The NapaLearns Partners for Projects (P4P) program matches businesses and community members with teachers and students who need their knowledge, talents, and expertise in classrooms throughout the county. We are looking for experts of all kinds, who are passionate about their field or subject matter, and who are willing to share their expertise with students.

For more information, email Susie Gallo.

Student filmmaking challenge

NapaLearns Director of Innovation, Mario Piombo, showing New Tech High Students basic cinematography techniques.

By Mario Piombo

Communication and creativity skills are a critical component to success in the 21st century. From higher education to participation in the workforce, the ability to craft and express original ideas and information is becoming more and more important on a daily basis. At NapaLearns, we believe that educating our students on the responsible use and mastery of digital communications tool is critical in today’s loud and often contentious media-driven society. Read More

Thank you to the Gennet family for making a difference

Donor spotlight

Through this generous gift, over 20 families received an iPad and customized training on how to use FootSteps2Brilliance, an online reading application, at home with their children. Average monthly at home usage has increased from 42 minutes per month to 202 minutes per month. The investment in early childhood education and the push for catching students up at an early age is critical. By leveraging technology to close the achievement gap in the early years, there is a greater chance that students can be successful in all of their academic pursuits.

The Digital Early Learning program in Napa County originated with a pilot program in 2011 called Summer Bridges, with 17 children of high poverty who were also English Language Learners and who had no school experience. In collaboration with the Calistoga Joint Unified School District, the Calistoga Family Center, Napa Valley First Steps program, and the Napa County Office of Education, NapaLearns provided funding to support these disadvantaged children with iPads, digital reading curricula, Footsteps2Brilliance, and pre-post kindergarten readiness assessments during the 4 week preschool program.

NapaLearns needs your support

Transforming existing public schools requires long-term funding, persistent and strong partnerships with district staff, education experts, and community leaders, plus a commitment to stay the course. We hope you will become a partner and make an investment in this amazing work.

Make a Donation today