Using Children’s Literature as a Model for Problem-Based Learning


  • Katherine A. Mangione
  • Shannon E. Harmon


Children’s Literature, Problem-Based Learning, Design Thinking, Elementary Science Education, Environmental Education


Problem-Based Learning (or PBL) is a teaching style that pairs beautifully with science and social studies. PBL allows students to drive their learning, providing autonomy to choose topics or issues that interest them. It scaffolds the development of desirable 21st century skills: collaboration, critical thinking, communication, creativity, flexibility, and higher levels of cognitive thinking. Using a specific approach to PBL can assist teachers and students in understanding the process and knowing where their work is taking them. This article will share using the children’s book Spring after Spring: How Rachel Carson Inspired the Environmental Movement by Stephanie Roth Sisson (2018) and Design Thinking as a guide for implementing Problem-Based Learning with your elementary level learners.


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