Equity & Access Professional Learning Teacher Inquiry

Let ‘Em Shine ~ Elevating PBL

Curators notes:

Energized by recent community debates over local Confederate monuments, The Let ‘Em Shine project invited students to help unite the community by creating a symbolic “monument” that tells a broader story and honors the rich cultural history of Charlottesville, Virginia.


A year-long project-based learning project called Let It Shine which connected students across three high schools to ask questions surrounding local monuments and their stories.

The Back Story:  In May of 2017 Albemarle County was awarded an LRNG Innovators grant sponsored through the National Writing Project and John Legend’s Show Me Campaign.  Let ‘Em Shine was born.   A year long PBL project for high school students that asked students to consider four central questions.  Why do we have monuments?  Whose stories have been told through the monuments in our community?  Whose stories are missing and how do we want to memorialize them?

On a broader scale, the project served to transform PBL work in our division as interdisciplinary teachers from all three high schools collaborated to elevate student thinking, curiosity and creativity.

Visit the Let ‘Em Shine Google Site for the whole story.

This post is part of the Designing for Connected Learning and Teaching collection.