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Project Based Learning

Project Based Learning (PBL) is a teaching method where students acquire both knowledge and skills by working for an extended period of time to investigate and respond to an authentic, engaging, and complex question, problem, or challenge. Students grapple with real-world problems, and present their knowledge to an authentic audience. These integrated projects offer students the opportunity to gain deep content knowledge as well as hone their skills in criticial thinking, collaboration, creativity, and public speaking. Below please find examples of Wornick's project based learning in action!


Throughout the school year, Kindergarteners use their outdoor garden to learn about the lifecycle of plants, observe the plants as they grow using math and science skills, and work together to maintain the garden. They also enjoy harvesting the plants to create salads and share with our school community. 

1st Grade

As part of Project Based Learning (PBL), first graders considered the question "How can we help new friends and visitors get to know our class and school community?" The students discussed various solutions, and expressed their thoughts creatively through drawings and video statements.

2nd Grade

As part of Project Based Learning (PBL), second graders were asked the question "How can we learn about the past, to imagine and predict the future?" Students used primary and secondary sources, created personal timelines, interviewed relatives, researched their family heritage, and created artifacts and inventions related to a specific topic area.

3rd Grade

In General Studies, 3rd graders learned about story telling and wrote their own fairy tales. Then they learned about illustration and animation in the Peleh Lab, and finally they built their own sets, props, and characters to create stop motion videos. 

4th Grade

The fourth grade class recently completed reading The City of Ember and brought the story to life using details from the book and skills they learned in science to recreate the buildings and wire them with lights. This provided the students new and unique ways to experience the book.

5th Grade

After learning that Foster City had two of the most polluted beaches in California and making observations at the lagoon, 5th grade students investigated to see if this could be caused by the increase in the Canadian Geese population, and researched ways that they could help solve the problem.

6th Grade

Sixth graders investigated the phenomenon of Fast Fashion in Ms. Pellegrini's Math class.  They first collected data on where Wornick middle schoolers' clothes were made, while learning ratio and percent skills. The next step was to research the environmental and social impacts of Fast Fashion, and to share these findings in a public display in the middle school hallway.

7th Grade

7th grade students in Ms. Newman's math class learned about muralists and the process of enlarging artwork to create murals, with help from Art Teacher Ginger. Then they combined math and art skills to design and create their own Wornick inspired murals to decorate the PE sheds.

7th Grade

In Science class, students were challenged to make a comparison between a cell and another familiar object such as a computer, car engine, castle, and the human body. This project included a drawing, description about how the organelles in the cell compare to the parts of the other object, and an explanation about why this comparison is useful.

8th Grade

8th graders have been studying the history and evolution of antisemitism, from ancient to modern times. They recently organized and led an interactive roundtable event with parents and community members to discuss ways that we can address antisemitism. 

8th Grade

8th grade students participated in a 10 week course on Entrepreneurship. It started with an intensive 3-day boot camp, and covered topics such as product iteration, user personas, business plan and revenue modeling, client interviews, market and competitor research, prototype design and construction, and pitch deck building and delivery.