Lecture
 Questioning/Discussion  Team
Teaching  Thematic Teaching
 Integrated Curriculum 
Cooperative
Learning
A
Definition for Cooperative Learning
Cooperative
learning can be defined as a generic term that describes a variety
of small group interactive instructional procedures. In these procedures,
students work together in small groups (usually on academic tasks)
to help themselves and their teammates learn together. In general,
cooperative learning methods share the following five characteristics.
1.
Students work together on common tasks or learning activities that
are best handled through group work.
2. Students work together in small groups containing two to five
members.
3. Students use cooperative prosocial behavior to accomplish their
common tasks or learning activities.
4. Students are positively interdependent. Activities are structured
so that students need each other to accomplish their common tasks
or learning activities.
5. Students are individually accountable or responsible for their
work or learning.
(taken
from Miller, 1996, http://www.utc.edu)
Cooperative
Learning Structures and Techniques
There
are many cooperative learning structures and techniques available
for just about any learning situation. Given the objective for a
lesson, you need to select a structure that will provide the optimal
learning experience for the students. If the objective is to get
to know the other students, then a team building
technique should be used. If mastery of information is your focus,
then one of the mastery structures
would be the best choice. If the emphasis of a lesson is to get
students to understand concepts, then a concept
development structure should be used. The
multifunctional structures can be used for getting
students to know each other better, mastery of information, as well
as concept development.
Kagan
(1989/1990) provides an excellent overview of the various cooperative
learning structures, including their academic and social functions.
Select a cooperative learning structure (by clicking on it) and
a table will appear that gives a brief explanation of each structure.
The structures include the following categories:
Team
Building (including Classbuilding, and
Communication Building) has three structures,
Roundrobin, Corners,
and Match Mine.
Mastery
also has three structures, Numbered Heads
Together, ColorCoded Coop Cards, and Pairs Check.
Concept
Development also includes three structures,
ThreeStep Interview, ThinkPairShare, and Team
WordWebbing.
Multifunctional
includes five structures, Roundtable,
InsideOutside Circle, Partners, Jigsaw, and
Coop Coop.
Additional
information about cooperative learning structures can be found at:
http://www.jigsaw.org
(a web page about how to use the
jigsaw technique)
http://www.clcrc.com
(a
connection to the Cooperative Learning Center web page of Roger
T. & David W. Johnson)
http://www.iasce.net/resources.htm
(a web site of cooperative learning
resources)
Reference
Kagan,
S. (1989/1990). The structural approach to cooperative learning.
Educational Leadership, 47 (4), 1215.
