Learning Strategies Reflection
The cooperative learning approach is a very popular approach to teaching. In the high school history class video, the teacher used the cooperative learning approach for her lesson. Cooperative learning is “An instructional approach in which students work together in groups to achieve learning goals” (Ryan, Cooper, & Bolick, 2016). Cooperative learning is putting the students into peer groups. The teacher in the video had her students put themselves into groups of four or three.
The teacher had an assigned reading for homework the night before class. She had the students break up into groups so they could define what it means to be a human being and also to break down the story they read. The students were required to develop an analysis of the story and use critical thinking. Critical thinking and problem solving are two of the many cooperative learning strategies that exist (Ryan, Cooper, & Bolick, 2016). The students put together their thoughts and would feed off each other to develop a better understanding of the material.
Cooperative learning has many pros and cons. In the video specifically the teacher thought that the pros to cooperative learning were that it helps develop and improve the analytical reading and writing skills of the students. A student in the class thought that cooperative learning was great because of the feed back he would hear from other students. The thoughts of other students helped him learn a new perspective of viewing the material. Cooperative learning is a great way to help students develop social skills and learn from peers. A con to cooperative learning is when the groups are not made up of students who are on the same level. Some students may either be left behind or left to do all the work, unless the groups are specifically picked by the teacher based on learning levels (Ryan, Cooper, & Bolick, 2016). In the video the teacher allowed her students to pick their own groups.
Another way to utilize the cooperative approach would be in a middle school geography class. In the geography class when studying different types of government, the teacher could break the students into groups to create their own country. The students would have to decide what type of government the country would have and why, what the county’s flag looks like, the name of the country, and where it is located. Not only does this project help the students understand the material that was previously studied, it also taps into their creativity. This project would also incorporate many different learning styles. However, it is important for the teacher to make up the groups based on learning levels, so some students do not get left behind. This scenario is a different approach than the history class in the video because the students would be put into groups by the teacher. Whereas, in the video, the teacher allowed her student to pick their groups. The project also incorporates other learning styles than just critical thinking, writing, and problem solving like the video.
Ryan, K., Cooper, J. M., & Bolick, C. M. (2016). Those who can, teach. Retrieved from http://ng.cengage.com/static/nb/ui/index.html?nbId=494196&nbNodeId=175040648&deploymentId=4860151721802090156278775&eISBN=9781305267077#!&parentId=175040691
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