Monday, February 6, 2012

Cooperative learning: There is more than just groups!

Cooperative learning is a skill that many teachers know how to go about it to say, but often do not understand what it is. A mistake that is the teachers on CL, that it is the same, the student is to break into groups. Have, in fact, there are many elements that exist in a real environment of cooperative learning. One of the most important elements is assigned to roles. Each student group must be responsible for some aspects of group work. There are many options for the roles. Which you use depends on your purpose, put the students into groups.

Spencer Kagan is an innovator in theory, cooperative learning and practice. He identified 12 roles in cooperative groups. Each of these roles needs to be discussed and in-class role models before you expect the students can carry out in an appropriate manner. These roles include, coach, cheerleader, captain still and moderator. It is important to be very specific about what is required for each role. Printed with the different roles described that relate to the students is very helpful.

If you group the children and gives them a task to complete as a group, there is usually a child who takes over and says: ". We thus" Some students just sit and watch the makers do the work. There is a certain group. The Go-getter who thinks this is unfair because he did all the work. Children who have been lazy about something. Problems arise. The key that turns into a group of cooperative learning is the assignment of roles. Each person in the group is visible, assigned responsibilities. The teacher can observe and meet members of groups or do not fulfill their roles. Ratings members are also part of the process of cooperative learning. Students evaluate their own performance in the group of others, and that of the group as a whole. There are different levels of responsibility. Students can receive a degree individual, a measure group, or both, depending on the purpose of the activity.

Brain research indicates that each of the emotion most of the event is recalled from a non-emotional. Students work with peers are more involved in the class and experience the fun and companionship. In this way the information is likely to be remembered. CL also optimizes the engagement of students in the class, which is a key to learning.

Cooperative learning often involves a lot of front-loading by the teacher. Once students know some of the basics, but the process is much faster. This is possible through the use of structures.

Structures: the structures are what differentiate cooperative learning by "grouping".

There are 3 aspects of a structure of cooperative learning:

    Organize the classroom
    This is free content and repeatable
    It implements the basic principles of cooperative learning

Once students learn a specific structure (eg Think, Pair, Share), you can use the structure of content in many situations. The students know what to do and you can move quickly.

If you're interested in collaborative learning to read, understand and read the topic that much more complex than just putting the children in a random group. Spencer Kagan's books are a good start.