Events | MIT J-WEL


A comprehensive STEM education for secondary-school students is meant to develop critical thinking, problem-solving, creativity, collaboration, and self-directed discovery learning. Project-Based Learning (PBL) aims to promote more student-centered and experiential approaches to education through the interactive, collaborative exploration of real-world challenges to support STEM education. Despite the appeal of PBL, high school STEM teachers have been reluctant to employ it in their classrooms. The reasons are many, including “too much time away from mandated curricula,” “too much teacher preparation time,” and perhaps an unspoken reason: The need for the teacher to have greater-than-usual content knowledge in order to guide an engaged classroom with students leading, going deep into the subject matter. In this webinar, Dr. Richard C. Larson presents a new initiative of MIT BLOSSOMS ( that provides a complete scaffolding for the novice teacher who has no or limited experience with PBL.

Artificial intelligence is rapidly changing the way we learn, work, and live. From algorithms to smart devices to household robots, a generation of kids is growing up with their lives connected to, and influenced by, AI. Professor Cynthia Breazeal, head of the Personal Robots group at the MIT Media Lab, believes children should understand not only how AI works, but also how to design and use AI with a basis in ethics, inclusion, and empathy.

In this talk, Professor Breazeal will discuss how the Personal Robots group and AI Education at MIT work to innovate teaching and learning approaches to AI—including personalized learning companions for early childhood, AI and data literacy and privacy activities, and an AI + Ethics curriculum for middle schoolers.

Join us for a discussion with J-WEL Associate Director and Head of Operations Steve Carson to discuss J-WEL benefits, including our opportunities through affiliated organizations. This discussion is appropriate for current member organizations interested in getting the most out of their membership, and for organizations that might be thinking about joining J-WEL. We’ll provide a high-level overview of J-WEL’s structure, how we work with our members to effect educational transformation, and how our affiliate organization opportunities fit into our model.  

The three J-WEL Collaboratives—pK-12, Higher Education, and Workforce Learning—will convene for relevant presentations, research briefs, hands-on exercises, panels, and workshops. Throughout the program, in collaboration with MIT faculty and staff, members will be challenged to define their key goals and mechanisms for implementation.