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Promoting a Student Culture of Cooperation: A K-12 Professional Development Perspective Betsy Arnow, M.Ed, M.S. Lucy Vezzuto, Ph.D. TM.

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Presentation on theme: "Promoting a Student Culture of Cooperation: A K-12 Professional Development Perspective Betsy Arnow, M.Ed, M.S. Lucy Vezzuto, Ph.D. TM."— Presentation transcript:

1 Promoting a Student Culture of Cooperation: A K-12 Professional Development Perspective Betsy Arnow, M.Ed, M.S. Lucy Vezzuto, Ph.D. TM

2 Session Topics Professional Development Program Design Cooperative Learning: What And Why Character Education and Cooperative Learning Building A Cooperative Student Culture Training Issues And Insights

3 Program Design Learning community cohort Summer institute Monthly 3-hour meeting Teacher & school funding E-LA Lesson development IRB Advisory board TM

4 Volunteer character education “fellows” Started with E-LA teachers and then expanded into other subject areas Public and private faith-based schools Traditional K-12 educators Alternative-correctional education teachers YMCA after-school providers School administrators TM Program Participants

5 Professional Development Based on “Best Practices” Intentional, caring, ethical classroom and school community Cooperative learning Perspective taking Peer discussions Reflective thinking TM

6 Research and Program Evaluation External evaluator Quasi-experimental design Teacher focus groups Student focus groups Student knowledge & behavior survey School program quarterly reports Teacher efficacy TM

7 Tool and Processes Provide Data for Planning & Improvement K-W-L charts for promising practices Goal setting Reflection on implementing practices Bi-weekly written logs Assessing participants’ lesson plans Training evaluations Minute papers

8 Administrator involvement Evaluation tools Improving and growing Subject area focus Scheduling changes Ready, set, go Lessons Learned TM

9 Cooperative Learning is… “The instructional use of small groups so that students work together to achieve shared goals. The purpose of cooperative learning is to make each group member a stronger individual in his or her own right.” (Johnson and Johnson, 1994, p. 1)

10 Essential Elements of Cooperative Learning Interdependence Individual accountability Positive face-to-face interaction Social skill development Group processing

11 Student Perspective Cooperative groups should be structured so that students believe that they: 1.Sink or swim together 2.Assist and encourage others to achieve 3.Are individually accountable for doing their part of the group's work 4.Have to master the interpersonal and small group skills to be an effective group member 5.Should discuss how well the group is working and what could be done to improve the group’s work

12 Dr. Spencer Kagan University of California, Irvine A Cooperative Structures Approach

13 Structured Natural Approach Social skills are acquired and practiced while working on academic content.

14 “We used cooperative learning to discuss definitions of respect. Students gained different perspectives on what respect means by talking with one another.” A high school teacher “It was way too much fun. It was a perfect way to review for a weekly quiz.” A middle school teacher ICE Teachers are Saying… TM

15 A Think-Pair-Share What social-emotional skills and character attributes would students be practicing in an effective cooperative group?

16 Kagan’s S kill-Building Categories That Promote Character Development 1. Communication skills 2. Regulating communication 3. Making decisions 4. Developing social skills 5. Building relationships and teamwork 6. Formulating and expressing opinions 7. Developing thinking skills and controlling impulses 8. Nurturing shared leadership and responsibility (Kagan 1999)

17 Cooperative Learning Prepares Students for the Workplace Top 10 Qualities Employers Seek 1. Communication skills 2. Honesty – integrity 3. Teamwork skills 4. Interpersonal skills 5. Strong work ethic 6. Motivation – initiative 7. Flexibility – adaptability 8. Analytical skills 9. Computer skills 10.Organizational skills Source: Job Outlook 2002, National Association of Colleges and Employers, copyright holder.

18 What Research Says About Cooperative Learning We know more about CL than almost any other aspect of teaching and learning Considerable body of research validating its effectiveness Over the past 90 years 550 studies conducted comparing the relative effectiveness of cooperative, competitive, and individualistic learning Consistently improves achievement and retention, creates more positive relationships among students, and promotes students' psychological health and self-esteem (Johnson and Johnson, 1989; Walters 2000; Kagan 1999)

19 Dr. Kagan and the Research

20 Cooperative Learning & Character Development Students actualize character competence by practicing prosocial skills while working on academic content. Working collaboratively students practice the behaviors associated with core ethical values such as respect, responsibility, and integrity.

21 In the book EQ + IQ Best Leadership Practices for Caring and Successful Schools Knoll & Patti write “Cooperative learning strategies are vehicles for learning social-emotional skills and positive values.” (Edited by Elias, Arnold, Hussey 2003, p. 43)

22 ICE Teachers are Saying… “Cooperative learning helped students learn in group settings and learn the dynamics of respect and responsibility by working with others.” A middle school teacher “Partnering and talking about character traits and applying them to specific life situations seemed to make character education all the more meaningful.” A high school teacher TM

23 Eleven Principles of Effective Character Education Principle 1 Promotes core ethical values as the basis of good character. Principle 2 Defines "character" comprehensively to include thinking, feeling, and behavior. Principle 3 Uses a comprehensive, intentional, proactive, and effective approach to character development. Principle 4 Creates a caring school community. Principle 5 Provides students with opportunities for moral action. Principle 6 Includes a meaningful and challenging academic curriculum that respects all learners, develops their character, and helps them to succeed. Principle 7 Strives to foster students’ self motivation. Principle 8 Engages the school staff as a learning and moral community that shares responsibility for character education and attempts to adhere to the same core values that guide the education of students. Principle 9 Fosters shared moral leadership and long range support of the character education initiative. Principle 10 Engages families and community members as partners in the character-building effort. Principle 11 Evaluates the character of the school, the school staff’s functioning as character educators, and the extent to which students manifest good character. Source: Character Education Partnership 2003

24 Pairs Squared Using your handout, briefly review the Eleven Principles of Effective Character Education. With a partner, discuss and circle the principles that you think can be addressed through cooperative learning. Find another pair and compare your responses.

25 In Hearts and Minds: A Biological Brain in the Cultural Classroom, Robert Sylwester says, “We're inherently a cooperative species." (Sylwester, 2000, p. 2)

26 Culture Of Cooperation Safe social climate Democratic classrooms Class climate for collaboration Cooperative ethic and environment Positive interpersonal relationships Classroom to school community

27 Say Something Select a partner. Use the handout to silently read the following quote. Each partner will say something after the quote is read (a question, comment, key point, personal connection, interesting idea).

28 The Caines explain in Making Connections: “We have a brain-based drive to belong to a group and to relate to others. Hence educators need to support and consolidate social relationships and a sense of community. Friendship and companionship are both intrinsically important to us and contribute to safety, security, and relaxed alertness because a genuinely supportive group helps reduce threat.” (Caines 1994 p.125)

29 ICE Teachers Are Saying… ”Students developed relationships with others while we reviewed classroom management rules.” A middle school teacher “Students interact with peers and they compliment one another, are nicer to one another.” An elementary teacher TM

30 Training Issues & Insights Little research on cooperative learning training (Cohen, E. Brody, D. Sapon-Shevin, M. 2004 p.3) Different approaches and definitions Implementation Something old is new again Teachers in learners’ role Learn-teach-reflect-modify Be realistic Student-centered reflection

31 “Ancess (2000) discovered that much learning occurs in teachers when they examine their own practices with particular students in mind. Student-centered reflection results in improved student outcomes. The improved student outcomes in turn persuade other teachers to adopt the pedagogical and organizational innovations.” (Hinde 2003 p. 9) What Research Says About Student-Centered Reflection

32 Training Content 1.Social foundations of learning 2.Planning and organization 3.Task assignments 4.Cooperative structures 5.Social skills training 6.Assessment 7.Group processing 8.Strategies to engage all students

33 Participant Diversity Different educational settings Ranges of teaching expertise Variety of grade level and subject area examples Support for modifying practice

34 Responding to Our Participants Breakout teams facilitated by staff Informal and formal coaching Variety of grade level examples Subject area teachers support each other Adjust expectations as needed Alternative education Character-Based Literacy Program

35 ”What really matters for achieving the complex goals of character education? According to Michael Fullan (1993), what matters for anything of significance are new skills, creative thinking, internal motivation, and commitment to take action.” (DeRoche and Williams 2001 p.94)

36 And in closing…

37 Contact Information Institute for Character Education Orange County Dept. of Education P.O. Box 9050 Costa Mesa, CA 92628-9050 Betsy Arnow, M.Ed, M.S. Project Director 714.327.1053 Lucy Vezzuto, Ph.D. Coordinator, Research & Development 714.327.1081 TM

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