Cooperative Learning Instruction Strategies
For a teacher who is trying to teach through cooperative learning from the teacher's resources or lesson plans, he or she might face problems of discipline or noisy lessons as after all it's just a class full of students. Hence, there are some cooperative learning instruction strategies, which can be followed for effective teaching.
The first strategy is to make that the task you are given is not only increasing the study skills of the student but is also interesting and open enough for the group of students. The main reason for such activity is that the students must utilize the skills the teacher has taught them. For example, if the group of students is told to analyze rap songs and find out the issues related to the songs, they will read the songs and then write up their ideas about it, the main two points noted here is that the students get familiar with listening to each other as well as sharing information, which is a necessary step in learning.
The main challenge behind cooperative learning is that it needs to be planned in such a way that it fits perfectly and the students gain positively from it. For example, it can happen sometime that the students in a group are noisy and all the workload is shifted onto one student, in such a case you can either change the activity or reconsider your seating plan in order to neutralize the class dynamics.
Another important aspect in cooperative learning is that of motivation. When the students get into some task, motivation is a great necessity in order for them to proceed successfully. If they are motivated, they get new ideas which they are eager to share with their group members and as this continues each student gets more into the topic. In cases when students are allowed to pick up their own topic, they are opened to more opportunities for learning as they get to benefit from finding out more about their chosen topic.
One of the most important aspects of cooperative learning is to teach those students how to work in groups who aren't familiar with this type of learning. You can start off with small tasks in the classroom to warm up the air for cooperative learning. For example, you can make two groups in which one group asks questions about the topic the teacher has just taught and the second group provides answers, it is a great way of the students to learn to work in a group as they need to a reason to learn and tasks like these provide them a great opportunity.
Remember to not to start with big tasks. Start with smaller tasks when you think they are ready to work in groups and illustrate the task in a slow step by step way. You should keep in mind that while explaining the task you students know that you're the boss and listening to the steps you are telling is necessary because if it doesn't happen like this then your classroom management can go out of hand. You should not continue until you have each student's attention. In the end, assign them a deadline of the group work and tell them which work has to be done in the class and which one has to be completed at home.
Go Deeper Into Our Cooperative Learning Categories
- Johnson & Johnson
- Professional Literature On Cooperative Learning
- What is Cooperative Learning?