Favorite Cooperative Learning Structure

Discussion in 'General Education' started by otterpop, Jan 22, 2017.

  1. otterpop

    otterpop Aficionado

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    Jan 22, 2017

    What are your go-to methods for keeping kids engaged during a lesson?

    I'm thinking of Kagan structures, Whole Brain Teaching strategies, or any other kind, so share whatever you use. Sometimes I find I'm doing something but just not calling it by the name it's known by in certain programs. For example, I use this one (below) with table groups and recently found out it's a Kagan thing. I also do Think-Pair-Share a lot.

    [​IMG]
     
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  3. Pashtun

    Pashtun Fanatic

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    Jan 23, 2017

    I don't use Kagan structures, although I have read about them and tried a few over the years.

    What I try to do, struggle, fail, and have huge success with is simply trying to get students to have conversations about topics. I try to model all day long what a conversation looks like about academics. I then group students and simply encourage them to have discussions, help, challenge, question, answer each other while working on their work(each student is responsible for their own product/work).

    I do not group or use Kagan Structures for novelty, it is simply about encouraging conversations versus talking at each other.

    I will do jigsaw groupings, not for novelty, but for grouping students with certain types of problems that I want certain groups to answer. For example English language learners together, GATE students together, mixed ability groups together...etc.
     
  4. otterpop

    otterpop Aficionado

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    I've never thought of using jigsaw to differentiate like that, that's a good idea.
     
  5. Pashtun

    Pashtun Fanatic

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    Yeah you can use a text and write specific questions that your EL students can access and then group them for that problem. That way they are having a discussion about academics and feel successful being able to answer it.

    You can also set the groups where the group itself scaffolds the learning for certain students. I put them in a group where the question is just a bit out of their reach and group them with a few students who will be able to solve it and try to get them to have a discussion, helping to pull that student up to the tougher thinking question.

    Put a student who typically struggles, but I successful with a certain skill in a group where the student will be able to help those in his/her group.
     
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  6. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    I've been Kagan trained, but to be perfectly honest I haven't been using them much this year! Sad. Hmm...maybe I'll fix that. I have a class this year that would probably thrive with the structures.

    I've always loved quiz, quiz, trade, but it can be heavier on the prep work, depending on what you're doing.

    I also really like rally coach. I used to use that in math a lot, but I'm not so sure it'd work well with my current class. I may try it anyway.

    I've always liked using numbered heads together for review.
     
  7. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Jan 23, 2017

    Turn and talk
     
  8. otterpop

    otterpop Aficionado

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    This is the simplest, and my favorite really. No one is confused about what to do, and it's quick and easy. I have my kids turn and talk many times each day.
     
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  9. MissScrimmage

    MissScrimmage Aficionado

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    I love quiz-quiz-trade! I think I learned about it from one of your posts. To ease the prep, I usually have students make the trading cards. That way everyone starts with one they know and I find we get a good mixture of difficulty.
     
  10. otterpop

    otterpop Aficionado

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    Jan 24, 2017

    Another good, easy activity is Scoot. You can use task cards or cut up problems from a worksheet - one per desk.

    "Scoot! is a whole-class educational game that your students will love. Place a question card on each desk in your classroom. To play, students move around the room, from desk to desk, answering questions or solving math problems."

    https://www.superteacherworksheets.com/scoot.html

    When I do it, I either say "Scoot!" or ring a bell to let them know they need to move to the next desk. I do it with really short answer questions - for example, right down the plural form of these singular nouns (one noun on each desk).
     
  11. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    Um, that's genius. Why have I never thought of that? Totally doing this soon.. :D
     
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  12. MissScrimmage

    MissScrimmage Aficionado

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    I love Scoot! Haven't done it for a while, but I'm already thinking of a few ways I can use it in the next few weeks.
     
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  13. otterpop

    otterpop Aficionado

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    :D I like it a lot, because it's really structured but also fun. My kids need both a lot of structure and a lot of chances to move! I need to do it more often too.
     

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