top of page

We build a bridge between theory and practice

In 2020, KlimaZirkus published the book “Project-based learning and innovation in an open school” (Andersen, 2020). 

This article explains the ideas on learning behind the book, as well as the models that are central to the didactics related to project-based learning (PBL).  The article is based on our participation in the EU project PHERECLOS, where KlimaZirkus has collaborated with the Technical University of Riga and the University of Copenhagen.

The article introduces theori connected to PBL and  the model “The eight basic elements”, which describes elements that project-based learning processes must consider (Andersen, 2020). The focus of the model is a combination of professional knowledge, skills, character, and metacognitive tools. 


What is the foundation of the project?

 de 8 grundelementer_A3_engelsk_2.jpg

What is the foundation of the project?

In order to evaluate the structure, focus and methods in play KlimaZirkus uses a model of eight basic elements to self assess in order to detérmine what the project idea is based on. The project does not have to contain all eight elements. However, it is important to be aware of how the methods are involved from the beginning. These elements connect the relation between aims and goal, skills, knowledge, character traits of work competences

and meta-learning.

5 typer af PBL forløb_egelsk.jpg

What kind of activity?

What kind of activity?

Project-based learning is an approach to learning where the teacher sets
restrictions, sets a carefully selected, intriguing questions or pointing to a particular issue.

The teacher can plan learning experiences during the work process, but it is the students who drive it. PBL projects come in many shapes and sizes, and some projects are a combination of several different types.


The five innovation competencies

The five innovation competencies

The model provide an understanding of innovation competence, as an overall concept. It gives teachers opportunity to focus on different parts of the students' innovation competence.
- What learning goals are constructive in   

connection with the didactic work with the students' innovation competence?
-  How can we use PBL to meet broad learning goals?


The 4C compass

Navigation in 21st century skills

I can think (critically)

To relate to the world around me, do problem solving, analyze, assess, ask clarifying questions.

I am creative

To create and innovate, be full of ideas, inventive, learn from experiences, show originality.

I can collaborate

To collaborate, participate equally in processes, show responsibility, being open minded


I can listen and speak

Listen, express ideas, use different platforms, use different expressions and terms.

PBL Karakteregenskaber_engelsk_edited.jpg


In the character dimension, we work with how we react and behave when we interact with the outside world.


To operationalize the dimension, we use the model “The Character Wheel”, which via four habits and twelve sub-habits provides the opportunity to focus student conversations and design teaching that address the development of students' character (Andersen, 2020).


The Character Wheel is an extension of Bill Lucas and Ellen Spencer’s tenacity model (Lucas, 2018).

Are you curious about PBL?


KlimaZirkus helps schools to experiment with and implement  PBL.

Pleace contact us if you would like to collaborate.

bottom of page