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Transcript of Cooperative Groups
Types of Groups
Shared goals and outcomes
Formal Cooperative Group
Informal Cooperative Group
Cooperative Base Group
Overall what works...
Specific to cooperative learning
Johnson, Johnson, Holubec
Positive Interdependence - success is only achieved when all learn
sharing, celebrating, responsibility to each other
Promotive Interaction - helping, assisting, supporting, encouraging, and praising each other's efforts to learn
sharing approaches to problem solving, sharing connections,connecting
past and present learning
performance of each individual student is assessed and the results are
given back to the group and the individual
Interpersonal and Small-Group Skills
leadership, decision making, trust-building, communication, and
conflict management must be taught just as purposefully and precisely
as academic skills
Group Processing (Reflection)
Holloway (Ed Leadership, Dec04/Jan05 Vol. 61 no. 4)
Talk, exchange ideas, make meaning, presented findings
Objectives for both group and content
Group structures based on strengths
Planned opportunities to take the temperature of the group
Evaluate and reward skills & learning
Training in Group Skills
listening to one another, sharing resources, staying on
task as a group, planning together, compromise/negotiation
Making Connections to Skills Developed Outside the Classroom
From Cooperative Learning in the Classroom
Cooperative Note-Taking Pairs
The notes students take during a lesson are important. Most students, however, take incomplete notes because of low-working memory capacities, the lesson's information processing load, and a lack of note-taking skills. Students benefit from learning how to take better notes and how to review their notes more effectively. You can help students by assigning them to note-taking pairs. Every 10 minutes or so during a lesson, stop and have paired students share their notes with each other. Tell pair members that they must take something from one another's notes to improve their own. The task is to focus on increasing the quantity and quality of the notes taken during a lesson. The cooperative goal is for both students to generate a comprehensive set of accurate notes that will enable them to learn and review the material covered in the lesson.
A common practice in most classrooms is to hold a whole-class discussion. Often during such discussions, teachers ask a student to answer a question or provide a summary of the lesson. The student doing the explaining has an opportunity to clarify and extend his knowledge through active involvement in the learning process, but the rest of the class is passive. You can ensure that all students are actively learning by requiring all students to answer questions about the lesson simultaneously through the formulate, share, listen, and create procedure.
During this procedure, students formulate an answer to a question that requires them to summarize what the lesson has covered. Students then turn to a classmate close by and share their answers and reasoning. Each student listens carefully to her partner's explanation, and then the pairs create a new answer superior to their initial formulations through the processes of association, building on each other's thoughts, and synthesizing. The students' task is to explain their answers and reasoning to a classmate and practice the skill of explaining. The cooperative goal is to create a joint answer that both members agree to and can explain. Your role is to monitor the pairs and assist students in following the procedure. To ensure individual accountability, you may wish to ask randomly selected students to explain the joint answer they created with their partners.
Read and Explain Pairs
It's often more effective to ask students to read assigned material in cooperative pairs than individually. (This is especially helpful when you lack materials for each student.) The expected criterion for success is that both members be able to explain the meaning of the assigned material correctly. The task is for the pairs to ascertain the meaning of each paragraph and the assigned material as a whole. The cooperative goal is for both members to agree on the meaning of each paragraph, formulate a joint summary, and be able to explain their answer.
Here's how it works:
Assign a high reader and a low reader to a reading pair and tell them what specific pages (passages) you want them to read.
Students read all the section headings for an overview.
Students silently read the first paragraph and take turns acting as summarizer and accuracy coach. They rotate roles after each paragraph.
The summarizer summarizes in her own words the content of the paragraph to her partner.
The accuracy coach listens carefully, corrects any misstatements, adds anything that was left out, and explains how the material relates to something they already know.
The students then move on to the next paragraph and repeat the procedure. They continue until they have read all the assigned material. At that point, they come to an agreement on the overall meaning of the assigned material.
During the lesson, systematically monitor each reading pair and assist students in following the procedure. To ensure individual accountability, randomly ask students to summarize what they have read so far. Remind students that there is intergroup cooperation—whenever it is helpful, they should check procedures, answers, and strategies with another group, or if they finish early, they should compare and discuss answers with another group.
Cooperative Writing and Editing Pairs
When your lesson requires students to write an essay, report, poem, story, or review of something they have read, you should use cooperative writing and editing pairs. Pairs verify that each member's composition is perfect according to criteria you explain; then they receive an individual score on the quality of their compositions. You can also give a group score based on the total number of errors made by the pair in their individual compositions.
Here's how the procedure works:
You assign students to pairs with at least one good reader in each pair.
Student A describes what he is planning to write to Student B, who listens carefully, probes with a set of questions, and outlines Student A's ideas. Student B gives the written outline to Student A.
This procedure is reversed with Student B describing what she is going to write and Student A listening and completing an outline of Student B's ideas, which is then given to Student B.
The students individually research the material they need for their compositions, keeping an eye out for material useful to their partner.
The students work together to write the first paragraph of each composition to ensure that they both have a clear start on their compositions.
The students write their compositions individually.
When the students have completed their compositions, they proofread each other's compositions, making corrections in capitalization, punctuation, spelling, language usage, and other aspects of writing you specify. Students also give each other suggestions for revision.
The students revise their compositions.
The students then reread each other's compositions and sign their names to indicate that each composition is error-free.
While the students work, your role is to monitor the pairs, intervening when appropriate to help students master the needed writing and cooperative skills. Whenever it is helpful to do so, students may check procedures with another group. When students complete their compositions, they discuss how effectively they worked together (listing the specific actions they engaged in to help each other), plan what behaviors they are going to emphasize in their next writing pair, and thank each other for the help and assistance provided.
There are times during a lesson when you might want to have students review what they have previously learned and drill on certain procedures to ensure that the procedures are overlearned. At these times, cooperative learning is indispensable.
To implement drill-review pairs, assign students to pairs and each pair to a foursome. Instruct the students to do the following:
Student A reads the assigned problem and explains step-by-step the procedures and strategies required to solve it. Student B checks the accuracy of the solution and provides encouragement and coaching.
Students A and B rotate roles on the second problem.
When the pair completes two problems, members check their answers with the other pair in their foursome. If they disagree, they must discuss their reasoning and come to a consensus about the answer. If they agree, they thank each other and continue working in their pairs.
The procedure continues until students complete all the assigned problems.
To ensure individual accountability, you can randomly ask individual students to explain how to solve a selected problem.
Math Problem-Solving Pairs
Problem solving in cooperative math teams enables students to practice the skills necessary for problem solving in "real-life" situations. Most math problem solving outside of school happens in teams where partners interact to clarify and define a problem (identify what is known and unknown), describe and illustrate the problem (write mathematical equations and draw diagrams or graphs), discuss and suggest methods to solve the problem, apply operations, and check logic as well as calculations. Similar procedures in cooperative learning groups promote productive problem solving by enabling students to continuously test ideas as well as get and give feedback.
First, assign students to cooperative learning groups (initially pairs, eventually triads or quads as students become more skilled in working together) that are heterogeneous according to mathematical ability with at least one good reader in each team. Groupmates should understand that their mutual goal is to solve a problem, agree on the answer, and be able to explain each step they used to solve the problem.
Second, have groupmates read the problem, determine what they do and do not know, and describe the problem mathematically, using equations, diagrams, graphs, or manipulatives. After discussing and agreeing on methods to solve the problem, groupmates perform the calculations, explaining the rationale for each step and checking computations. You may assign and rotate roles after each step to facilitate the process. Student A, for example, may describe how to perform the first calculation while Student B records the calculation and explains the rationale for it. Then Student B describes how to perform the second computation while Student A records the computation and explains the rationale for it. They repeat the procedure until they solve the problems. Both students sign the answer, indicating that they agree with the solution and can explain how they obtained it.
Finally, have groups discuss how effectively they worked together (listing specific actions that facilitated success), plan behaviors to improve the problem-solving process, thank each other for the help and assistance received, and celebrate their success.
Intellectual conflict (controversy) is one of the most powerful and important instructional tools. Academic controversies are an advanced form of cooperative learning. The basic format for structuring academic controversies follows:
Choose a topic with content the students can manage and on which at least two well-documented positions (pro and con) can be prepared.
Prepare the instructional materials so that group members know what position they have been assigned and where they can find supporting information.
Assign students to groups of four, dividing each group into two pairs, one pro and one con. Be sure to highlight for students the cooperative goal of reaching a consensus on the issue and writing a quality group report on which all members will be evaluated.
Assign each pair the cooperative task of learning their position and its supporting arguments and information.
Have each pair present its position to the other. The group discusses the issue, critically evaluating the opposing position and its rationale and comparing strengths and weaknesses of the two positions.
Have the pairs reverse perspectives and positions by presenting the opposing position sincerely and forcefully.
Finally, have group members drop their advocacy, reach a consensus, and write a group report that includes their joint position and the supporting evidence and rationale.
To ensure individual accountability, you can give a test on the content of both positions and award bonus points to groups whose members all score above the preset criteria of excellence. (You can find a more detailed description of conducting academic controversies in Johnson and Johnson .)
In Group Investigation, formulated by Shlomo and Yael Sharan (1976), students form cooperative groups according to common interest in a topic. All group members help plan how to research their topic, dividing the work among themselves. Group members individually carry out their parts of the investigation, and then the group synthesizes and summarizes its work and presents the findings to the class.
In Co-op Co-op, developed by Spencer Kagan (1988), students are assigned to heterogeneous cooperative learning groups, each of which is assigned one part of a learning unit. Each group member is then assigned a minitopic. Students engage in individual research on their minitopics and then present their findings to their groups. Each group then integrates the minitopics of its members into an overall group presentation, which is given to the whole class.
LINK FOR OVERALL: http://www.ascd.org/publications/books/108053/chapters/Introduction_to_the_Research.aspx
LINK FOR SCIENCE:
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About Structures to
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See also Richard Light (Harvard Groups)