Enactment of Group Work
Government, Sustainability & Our Global World. In this class, students were working on revising essay plans for exams. Students were split into three groups via randomisation. Students used exit cards upon entry finding members of the class that had similar statements or pictures. This method could also be used for teacher selection, as I know which exit cards belong to each student.
International students try to find their groups. Students had to find others who had the same category as them. They were allowed to ask Yes/No questions. Once they found their group they sat down and worked on writing quizzes for one another. Students were hesitant to stand up and move around the room. Each time I used this method, it was interesting to note how long it took students to begin to move.
Lesson on 'Why New Zealand is Awesome'. This is a picture from a lesson I gave to a class of international students. They were split into six different categories ranging from famous New Zealanders to extreme sports. This is an example of random selection. Students found their groups and then worked to write quizzes about their topic.
Grouping my students based on mixed ability. For this task, student groups based on mixed ability. Slavin (1994) and Aronson (2012) both suggest groups should be as heterogeneous as possible. Mixed ability grouping is good for both stronger and weaker students, weaker students see how better students study and approach problems, whilst stronger students gain a deeper understanding through teaching the content (Felder and and Brent, 1994).
Grouping my students based on cultural diversity. Teacher selection of groups can be an inclusive practice. In this class, I placed my students into groups they didn’t usually work in and made sure to provide a widespread mix of cultural and social backgrounds in each group. The recognition, acceptance and appreciation of learner differences required for collaborative learning are the same skills that are needed for positive intercultural relationships (Manning & Lucking, 1993).
Grouping my students based on learners strengths. Learners should be told that groups are made in order to take advantage of the different strengths of individual learners (Vermette, 1995). For future practice I want to look at alternating roles, so that students also get to work on areas they struggle with.
Assignment of students in group roles. These name tags were part of an escape room I organised for my Year 9 students. Each student was given a role that they needed to adopt, as well as tasks that they needed to complete before they could finish the activity. Students were organised into five key roles; leader, writer, historian, questioner and keeper. The roles were assigned based on the learners needs and strengths.
Outlining the group roles and responsibilities. This video was part of an escape room I organised for my Year 9 students. Each student was given a role that they needed to adopt, as well as tasks that they needed to complete before they could finish the activity. The assignment of group roles, along with the division of labour and shared responsibility, was an attempt to create positive interdependence between students (Johnson and Johnson, 1994).
Classroom structure and organisation. This is an image from a group work activity I ran, where I rearranged the desks for students. Johnson and Johnson (1989) argue that a key part of effective group work is the need for face to face interaction. For effective communication groups have to be ‘eye to eye’ and ‘knee to knee’ (Thomson and Brown, 2000). This became problematic, due to the ICT element in the lesson.