Why Project-Based Learning and Alternative Schools are the future.

The future of education as a pedagogy is Project Based Learning

Tapas is an Alternative School in Bangalore that is amongst the first schools in India to implement 100% Project-Based Learning.

What is project-based learning?

Odds are that you might not have heard about it. Project-based learning is a teaching method,

That engages students in projects that are meaningful, enjoyable, and relevant.

Project-based assignments are tailored to student needs and skills.

It is an active form of learning for students where they learn by doing.

Project-Based Learning

Why Project-Based Learning?

Students are at the center of the educational journey and take an active part in it.

Multiple studies have shown that passive rote learning from textbooks is insufficient to prepare a student for today’s world.

Traditional learning methods often focus on facts or memorization of information.

Project-based learning on the other hand focuses on higher-order thinking skills, creativity, and collaboration.

It has been proven to be more effective than traditional teaching methods.

It challenges students to take ownership of their learning experience.

In a technology-first society, the fundamental skill set needed to thrive is vastly different from what it was 30 years back.

Project-Based Learning focuses on enabling students to tackle real-world problems by simulating them in the form of projects in the school.

Project-Based Learning demands that students break away from their comfort zones and ask more questions,

Thus developing more curiosity in a child than traditional learning methodologies.

The four main benefits of project-based learning are:

It improves student achievement, is student-centered, fosters teamwork and problem-solving skills,

And promotes the use of higher-order thinking skills.

Project-Based Learning also enables students to more accurately demonstrate their capabilities in a specific field than the archaic ‘tests’ of traditional learning.

Project-Based Learning


Implementing Project-Based Learning.

Why is it that then most schools shy away from project-based learning?  Because it is difficult to implement.

And it needs experienced educationists at the helm to be implemented well.

Project-based learning demands a total transformation of the traditional teaching apparatus and classrooms.

Project-Based Learning is an instructional strategy that helps students to learn by doing.

Teachers give their students the chance to solve a problem, create something, or work with their creativity and develop skills such as critical thinking and problem-solving.

The advantage of using Project-Based Learning in the classroom is that,

It can be tailored to different levels of learning and different subjects.

It is also more engaging than traditional teaching methods because it requires active involvement from the student.

A research study found that not only were Project-Based Learning participants more likely to say they enjoyed school,

But also that they had improved attitudes toward math and science compared to those who did not participate in Project-Based Learning activities.

The Project-Based Learning process is a five-step plan that allows instructors to create projects with real-world applications.

The steps are Define, Explore, Plan, Implement, and Evaluate.

There are many useful tools for teachers to use,

When implementing this model including presentations and graphics on the topic of the project.

Project-Based Learning

Project-Based Learning is the future.

In the future, Project-Based Learning will be a major part of our education system.

That is because it allows for a more engaging and immersive experience that pushes students to their limits.

While giving them a sense of ownership over their work.

It also gives them ways to demonstrate mastery in ways other than traditional tests.

Tapas School Bengaluru

Summ(it) Up!

At Tapas, we celebrate the completion of the first term of school with an entirely child-led exposition called Summit Of the Minds.

The exposition is facilitated by the students from start to finish. Learner-led exposition builds up the students’ sense of responsibility and accountability whilst also honing their communication skills.

It enables them to have a deeper understanding of what it means to meet learning targets.

The Benefits of Learner-Led Exposition

  • Students actually show parents what they know and are learning in school.
  • Parents are exposed to materials and activities that students engaged in during the school day which helps them gauge actual progress.
  • Teachers can observe interactions, comment, offer suggestions, and model strategies.
  • Students, parents, and the teacher are all active participants in the conference.

Learner-led Expositions | Tapas School Bengaluru

At Tapas, we believe that Learner-led Expositions are an important way to engage learners with understanding and taking ownership of their learning.

We also believe that these expositions help us build better communication and stronger relationships with the families of Tapas.

Parents and family members are critical partners in helping support the child’s learning and growth.

The long winding road to the Summit!

The learners started with actively participating and deciding how the presentation of the topic will be done. They made a game out of it, used charts, made videos, and planned experiences/activities for parents to do.

The facilitators gave a few ideas, to begin with, and welcomed the learners to plan them.

The facilitators’ role was only to guide the learners and keep reminding them of the purpose gently and subtly.

The learners initiated planning the event as well.

Starting from where the presentations can happen, the invite design, right up to putting up signs, and all the way to feedback forms.

As can be imagined, Tapas was abuzz with the learners’ voices, more than usual.

Here are some anecdotes to give you an insight into how the days leading up to the summit looked.

Role Allocation:

The ease with which the learners allocated roles to each other, segregated the responsibilities, and organized themselves into groups, left us amazed!

There were the roles of head of operations, designing, creativity, and more. Each ‘Head’ would convene ‘secret’ meetings, secret because they had requested the facilitators to stay out of it!

The most remarkable observation was to see learners don the hat of a leader for one of the duties and happily transition to a team player for another.

We kept hearing the term ‘Boss’ quite often when they would refer to the head of that duty.


One of the learners approached the facilitator two days before the event.

And asked if they could do the morning routine of sanitizing and entering student details, as they wanted to practice doing it for the SOTM.

This incredible foresight was that of a learner, all of 8 yrs old!

The same student, when they observed that it was time-consuming for them to write every name on the day of dry run, they improvised and asked the visitors to write their name themselves. Aha!

Personalized Invites

Each child made invitations to all the people they wanted to invite. Here’s a peek.

Day of the Summit

The learners decided that the parents would be divided into two batches so that they could enjoy each presentation without crowding.

When one of the learners was nervous to present, another helped them saying “you need to do the presentation or else, your parents would take you out of tapas as they would think, you didn’t learn anything from school, and then we cannot be friends anymore”

One of the learners had not planned to make every parent do the activity he was demonstrating. He observed the first few presentations of his friends, where he noticed how the parents were participating.

He improvised on the spot and during his presentation, made every parent experience his learning.

After presenting their learning to two batches of parents, the learners quickly donned their costumes for the art presentation.

Their confidence shone through every step, every expression and radiated throughout the art village!

Post Summit

Learners have been implementing Austin’s butterfly technique of giving and receiving feedback, practicing ‘be specific, be kind and be helpful.’

Feedback is a large part of how learning happens at Tapas. The Monday after the Summit, it was time to get them to share their thoughts about the Summit.

The learners each shared what they felt went really well and also one area that they felt could have been better.

We heard ‘some of the students were making noise after their presentation, that has to be avoided’, ‘everyone presented with confidence’ and much more.

The learners also reviewed the feedback that the parents had given after the summit. Among the post its, most had words of motivation like ‘good job’, ‘great work’, etc.

The learners looked at this and said ‘this is not good feedback’.

We were stunned, it seemed like great reviews from the parents, so why were the learners not happy? They explained their thinking, that these forms of reviews did not qualify as good feedback as they weren’t helpful and nor specific though they were kind.

The learners found one post it with ‘Children can use role-play as a means of presentation next time’.

They all unanimously agreed that this was ‘Good Feedback’!!

When we look back at this experience, we believe that we set out with a few skills that we felt the learners would gain.

The learners taught us that, if any activity is child-led, the learning is far greater than any that can be planned by an adult! Look, we are learning too and we are grateful to our young learners for teaching us with such patience ☺

Do you have questions
and want to contact us?
Call or visit us.

+91 97 3160 1333

Main School campus:

#213, B.M Kaval, Bangalore South Taluk, Off Kanakapura Road, Bangalore - 560082

Early Years Campus:

586B, Vajarahalli Main Road, Off Kanakapura Main Road, Banashankari 6th Stage, Kanakapura road, Bangalore, Karnataka - 560062

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