Unlocking Potential: Maximizing Student Achievement with HQPBL and Asset-Based Learning

Learn how High-Quality Project-Based Learning (HQPBL) and asset-based learning create an effective educational environment that fosters student creativity, collaboration, and personalized learning opportunities by focusing on students' unique strengths and talents. 


We already know implementing a High-Quality Project-Based Learning (HQPBL) environment in your school fosters creativity, curiosity, and collaboration. It values students’ unique geniuses so they can get the most out of their learning. Now what if I told you there is a perfect compliment to HQPBL that not only promotes inquiry but also strengthens relationships students have with their teachers? It’s called asset-based learning. Like its name, asset-based learning uses students’ individual assets to create a culture of belonging and offers students an equitable learning experience. A well-rounded asset-based classroom provides ample opportunities for teachers to understand their students’ strengths, then utilize their strengths to foster learning, and ensure quality and frequent feedback is given. Similar to HQPBL, asset-based learning is student-centered and focuses on the child’s strengths.

Together, HQPBL and asset-based learning can be an effective way to increase student achievement. They both specifically support collaboration in the classroom, offer personalized learning opportunities and ownership, and foster students’ unique geniuses so they can thrive. Ultimately, it makes sense to use HQPBL and asset-based learning together in the classroom. Their focus on personalizing learning makes it a superpower for student learning.

As previously mentioned, HQPBL and asset-based learning both support a culture of collaboration. In HQPBL, collaboration is incorporated through group projects where ideas and learning perspectives are shared. Asset-based learning contributes to these efforts by using students’ strengths. For example, when designing groups for a project, teachers can use students' individual strengths, or assets, to build and complement learning groups. This not only creates a variety of geniuses in one group but gives students the opportunity to showcase their unique talents as well. So in one group, there may be a range of strengths that include leadership, creative thinking, and verbal skills. Imagine the possibilities when students with varied talents are grouped together and given the opportunity to showcase their unique strengths. Not only will there be an increase in engagement, but the level of creativity and curiosity will also improve because students will feel confident in their abilities.

Another way HQPBL and asset-based learning support each other is they both offer personalized learning opportunities and ownership. In HQPBL, students are given opportunities to exhibit their ownership through carefully curated choices and menus that promote inquiry. It is one of the many benefits of HQPBL because it offers students opportunities to tailor their own learning experiences. Similarly, asset-based learning does the same thing. By leveraging students' strengths, interests, and aspirations, teachers design unique learning pathways that offer students personalized learning approaches that support what they already know. Like HQPBL, these pathways can serve as menus, choice boards, or even projects. Ultimately, it provides students with a roadmap to being successful and can help them identify goals they want to attain.

As highlighted earlier, HQPBL and asset-based learning cultivate children’s individual talents and unique geniuses, empowering them to flourish not only in the classroom but also in all aspects of life. It’s about using what is strong with students to enhance their learning experiences so they can be as successful as possible. Moreover, HQPBL and asset-based learning complement each other so well because they give students the chance to apply their knowledge through practical and relevant tasks. As a result, students learn essential soft skills and understand what kind of learners they are. This kind of self-awareness and growth is essential in the real world. Giving students opportunities where they can understand how their learning relates to the rest of the world is key to their academic success. The best gift we can give children is a deep understanding of themselves, and help them build agency to reach their goals and succeed.

In conclusion, it is clear that HQPBL and asset-based learning share many of the same learning benefits. Through collaborative practices, a focus on personalized learning, and a mission to unlock students’ unique talents, asset-based learning is the perfect complement to a high-quality project-based learning environment. Moreover, we know relationships matter and asset-based learning is the key to building long-lasting relationships with students. Kids thrive on feedback; they want to know how they are doing and what they can do to be better. It’s as simple as that. Asset-based learning brings a human aspect to learning and strengthens the authenticism HQPBL provides.  It’s time we bring a paradigm shift in education. We must look past the traditional sit-and-get method in learning, and leverage what our students already know. Let’s help them thrive!



About the Author:

Mannu is an experienced educational professional with a demonstrated history in both instructional and leadership roles. She is a former intermediate teacher, interventionist, and instructional coach. Her areas of strength include project management, instructional coaching, educational technology, and school-wide instructional planning. Mannu is also an ASCD Emerging Leader, Class of 2019.


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