Tuesday, July 15, 2014

How Do You Manage Cooperative Group Work?

Hi blog friends! Today I wanted to share with you a litle bit about how I use cooperative group work in my classroom. I try to incorporate as much group work as possible into my daily routine and lessons. Why do I do this? Here are some reasons why: Cooperative group work can be an effective method to motivate students, encourage active learning, help develop key critical thinking skills, improve communication and enhance decision making skills. Group work also helps students take responsibility for their learning. Students can also learn a great deal from their classmates through cooperative group work. 

Without careful planning and facilitation, group work can be very frustating to both the students and the teacher. I want to be sure that my students are truly benefiting from working cooperatively in groups and not wasting our precious time. In order to do this you must manage, manage, manage! In the past I have given each group member a job. Job examples: time keeper, team leader/captain, reader, problem solver, etc. Another way of managing my group is group/table points. When groups are working together, quite, caught being good, etc. they get a point. At the end of the week the group who has the most points gets a prize. Prizes are anything from a trip to the treasure box, a Hawk Buck {this is school money}, monkey tokens {this is classroom money}, a popsicle, homework pass, etc. This works great and students really try to earn points for their groups. 

I wanted to change up my job titles and I thought  it would be a fun idea to tie in a community helper theme to help manage my cooperative groups. Since community helpers all have a specific job that they do, this will be perfect for my students to understand the importance of doing their job and helping their group (city). These are all community helper jobs that most students should be familiar with. I have turned these ideas into a little pack. I can't wait to use this pack with my firsties!  


This pack includes management tips, job roles for 3, 4, 5, or 6 students {depending on how you group them}, job necklace templates, job application, group rules/expectations poster, rubrics, and a management display for group points. Everything in this little pack will help get the new year started off right when it comes to cooperative group work! :)


Isn't that melonheadz clipart super cute!?

Job necklaces-- each group member will have a specific job. The necklace has the job on the front and their duties on the back. 


Cards to make job necklaces--- these are for a group of 6. There are additional cards for groups of 5, 4, or 3. 




Rubrics... this is for groups of 6. There are additional rubrics in this pack for groups of 5, 4, and 3.



If you are interested in this pack you can check it out in my little TPT shop by clicking the pic below! I would love to give a couple of these away. Leave me a comment sharing how you manage cooperative work in your classroom. I will randomly pic a few winners later. :)




Have a great Tuesday blog friends! 


2 comments:

Chrissy said...

I teach kindergarten. Our Academic Coordinator passed along info on cooperative learning last year and I was intrigued by the job titles :-). Your packet looks great!

There are many places in my schedule where the children are working in pairs or groups of four. I'd like to be more thoughtful about our group work by incorporating the job titles.

Enjoy the rest of summer!
Chrissy at ReadWriteSing

Suzy Q said...

I love your job titles! The way you worded each position makes each job seem appealing...so important with second graders, who all want to be in charge! Fantastic resource...fingers crossed.

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