What is Cooperative Learning and how is it different from other instructional methods?
Cooperative Learning is the instructional use of small groups through which students work together to maximize their own and each other’s learning.
w Competition « I swim, You sink » w Individualistic « We are each in this alone » w Cooperation « We sink or swim together »
Cooperative Learning... Refers to a set of instructional methods in which students work in small mixed- ability learning groups the students in each group are responsible not only for learning the material being taught in class, but also for helping their groupmates learn
Cooperative Learning can lead to... greater collaborative skills more on-task behaviour greater social support higher self-esteem better attitudes towards teachers better attitudes toward school higher achievement positive heterogenous relationships
The Five Elements... Positive Interdependence Individual Accountability Face to Face Interaction Group Processing Social Skills
Positive Interdependence... When all group members feel connected to each other in the accomplishment of a common goal. All individuals must succeed for the group to succeed.
Individual Accountability... Holding every member of the group responsible to demonstrate accomplishment of the learning.
Face to Face Interaction... Group members are close in proximity to each other and dialogue with each other in ways that promote continued progress
Group Processing... Group members evaluate their collaborative effort and target improvements
Social Skills... Human interaction skills that enable groups to function effectively Enhance communication, trust, leadership, decision-making, and conflict management
Rationale for teaching social skills... We assume, often incorrectly, that social skills are learned at home and that students have mastered them. How a person acts and speaks is important. Employers seek individuals with positive social skills. Having the skills to work cooperatively with other people improves self-esteem.
Teaching social skills means helping students understand... why they are learning the skill, what the skill is, ways the skill can be practised, how well they used the skill and how they can improve their use of the skill.
Examples of social skills for all ages... Leadership Decision-making Trust-building Communication Conflict-management Brainstorming
Social Skills for secondary students... negotiating celebrating success paraphasing expressing nonverbal support/encouragement reaching consensus resolving conflicts asking for justification integrating ideas
About the base group… w teacher selected groups w heterogenous groups of 4 (the nature of a task or materials available may dictate group size) small groups - promote involvement bigger groups - promote diversity in thinking w groups that are kept together long enough to experience success and establish belonging, support and trust
More Group Rules... KISSES K - Keep with your group I - Include everyone in the group S - Stay on task S - Share ideas and feelings E - Encourage others to participate S - Sixteen inch voices
Establishing Group Rules... DOVE METHOD for brainstorming D - Defer judgement (let everone speak) O - Original and Offbeat (don ’t hold back) V - Vast number of ideas E - Expand by association (integrate ideas)
The TEACHER’S is... …not the … sage on the stage but the … guide on the side
The TEACHER’S Role... Ø Determining the academic and social objectives Ø Determining the appropriate group size Ø Assigning the students to groups Ø Arranging the room Ø Preparing the materials Ø Monitoring and intervening Ø Evaluating and processing
The CL TEACHER will notice... lesson planning (structuring the learning activity) will take longer and require the teacher to be more organized prior to the lesson. that the teacher has more free time within the lesson to monitor and evaluate. the noise level is typically higher (on-task noise). students are less dependent on the teacher for learning.
CL lesson planning... Is there evidence of the five basic elements in the lesson? Is the social skill identified and appropriate for the age level and activity? Who are the teams? (base, pairs, etc) How will you evaluate the academic work and the social skill processing?
Grading… In a CL setting the teacher must decide when it is appropriate to assign grades as well as how to assign grades.
Three options... No grade is assigned Teammates share a single group grade Individual grades are given Several grading options are combined
is best when... No grade is best when... w the teacher is introducing new material and wants the students to practice the skill w the CL activity will take a very short time w teams are newly formed w the teacher is monitoring learning progress and is interested in formative evaluation
Teams is best when... Teams sharing a grade is best when... w teammates collaborated on one shared product w teammates have had a previous successful cooperative experience w the duration of the project was extensive and group members were assigned work roles w the teacher has shared the marking criteria with the students
are best when... Individual grades are best when... o the purpose of the assignment or test is to measure individual mastery of knowledge or skills o teams work cooperatively assisting team- mates on individual projects (giving feedback, proof reading, etc.) o much of the work to complete the project was done outside of class time
Why use Cooperative Learning? Research has shown that cooperative learning techniques: - promote student learning and academic achievement - increase student retention - enhance student satisfaction with their learning experience - help students develop skills in oral communication - develop students' social skills - promote student self-esteem - help to promote positive race relations
Cooperative Learning is one of many effective methods of learning
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