XChange - Publications and Resources for Public School Professionals

Project-Based Learning for
Centering Student Voice in STEM

“Sometimes our world turns upside down and we can’t do anything about it, at least we have the same moon. Our world goes from colorful to dark, but what is still there? The moon. I used translation and reflection. As you can see the colorful side was flipped which is a reflection and makes everything look upside down. The moon was moved (translation), but is still flipped upside down.” 

-Dayana De La Torre 8th Grade South East DREAMS Middle School 

Project-Based Learning (PBL) is a teaching approach where student agency, choice, and content knowledge are actively applied to engage in real-world issues students care about. Project-Based Learning centered on equity goals allows students to engage in culturally responsive and community-based projects. In this issue of XChange, UCLA Teacher Education Program faculty, researchers, alumni, and students share their work to document and advance PBL projects that help make students’ energy, intelligence, and empathy visible.

Jaime Park and Imelda Nava

Spring 2023

The artist is Dayana De La Torre, an eighth grader from South East DREAMS Middle School. This artwork was shown in the “PBL What Moves You?” exhibition put together by teacher Gloria Mayorga (UCLA Teacher Education Program Graduate).