Holding Students Accountable for Group Work

Discussion in 'General Education' started by Peregrin5, Feb 14, 2014.

  1. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

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    Feb 14, 2014

    So I'm going to be doing a post lab activity in which students work in teams to come to a consensus on the best conclusion and reasoning for answering the investigative question.

    As part of this activity students will have different jobs like moderator (has to keep everyone on task), display maker (creates the whiteboard display), quality control (ribs through a checklist to ensure reasoning is good), and speaker (shares results with rest of class).

    My question is, how do you keep students accountable for teamwork and doing their individual parts in a group activity without penalizing everyone in the group for one individuals lack of effort?

    I'd like to do this in a way that involves as little paperwork as possible.
     
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  3. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Maven

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    Feb 14, 2014

    Is there a way to give them a rubric or outline of what's to be done. Then they would be able to check off what they personally did for the group.
     
  4. 2ndTimeAround

    2ndTimeAround Phenom

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    Feb 14, 2014

    What will your speaker be doing as the others are preparing the presentation?
     
  5. gr3teacher

    gr3teacher Phenom

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    Give each job a score, give the group as a whole a score, and average the two. For example, if the group as a whole earns an 80%, but it's obvious the speaker knew their stuff and did exactly what they you would have expected, give them a 100%. They end up with a 90% overall, and odds are each other group member will get significantly less.
     
  6. Pashtun

    Pashtun Fanatic

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    Feb 14, 2014

    I don't typically give jobs for group work, I expect them to all work together....this takes tons of modeling and practice throughout the year.

    I have a rubric that includes things like:
    1. Talking and having a conversation about the topic
    2. Finding mistakes and correcting them together
    3. Everyone's thinking is included in the work
    ...etc...
     
  7. Linguist92021

    Linguist92021 Phenom

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    Feb 14, 2014

    I agree with giving students jobs. It seems like 3 students out of the 4 can have written / visual results of their work: the display, the presentation, or the checklist for quality control. The only one where you might have to create something is for the moderator, who's supposed to ensure they're all on task. Maybe you can give them a checklist where as you walk around, you initial the paper every 10 minutes if they're on task, or you keep an eye on them some other way and walk up and initial it at certain times. And that would be his points.
     
  8. AliLand

    AliLand Rookie

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    Feb 15, 2014

    Always a shame we have to grade these things. I'm luck enough to have one grade where all I have to do is give one overall grade per student per term. This means I don't really have to give marks out for group work, so they can work on team building skills. Usually I randomize jobs and teams and consider it part of the lesson to evaluate with the class how it went (and decide what action can be taken - ie should a kid focus on their strengths or work on their weaknesses?)
    The following year, this is not an option as grades are needed. For this, I hand out individual marks regardless of the team, but as a class we decide winner and loser prizes for each team. 'Losers' typically have to prepare a presentation for the following week 'winners' get to choose one of the filler activities
     
  9. a2z

    a2z Virtuoso

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    Feb 15, 2014

    AliLand, are you teaching in Greece? I've never seen a school in the states where you just give one grade at the end of the term with no interim grades to track progress.
     
  10. Linguist92021

    Linguist92021 Phenom

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    Also, I would never give out 'loser prizes'. I guess things are very different in Greece.
    It is so much better to have many, many grades earned for different things, such as classwork, projects, tests, quizzes, etc, instead of just 1 grade. That does not give a true picture of the student's knowledge and skill level, and seems very subjective.
     
  11. AliLand

    AliLand Rookie

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    I am teaching in Greece, its a private school so we have flexibility. The class starter out as a bit of an experiment. I felt all the rote learning, tests, grades etc really got in the way of actual education. I wanted to build confidence and give oral feedback on an individual level. There was a worry that without the grades the students wouldn't work, to be honest it does take about a month for them to appreciated its not extended break time. Without proper evaluation, its hard to gauge just how successful the lessons are, but now I'm in to the third year of this every one agrees that subsequent years are much easier to teach than they used to be. Taking the pressure off weaker students let's them build skills with confidence while stronger ones really benefit - no longer do they coast through classes because they know they can pass with minimal effort.
    Obviously, we need standards and benchmarks, but a good teacher understands a child's real level better than test scores
     
  12. Bridgebuilder

    Bridgebuilder Rookie

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    Feb 21, 2014

    If part of the learning outcomes have to do with learning about teams and teamwork, and your kids aren't too young (Grade 8 should be OK), I'd, at least once in a while, give ONLY a grade for the team as a whole. That reflects how teams often work in the world.

    If the individual grades are going to be incorporated into some final important grade, then that's different.

    One problem with individual grades is that it's possible one or more kids will end up in "roles" that they really aren't suited for, and thus get penalized just because they got stuck with something they aren't good at, when, if they had another role, they'd be much better.
     
  13. kellzy

    kellzy Comrade

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    Feb 21, 2014

    I have the kids anonymously grade each other. Each kid fills out a form with their team's names on them and gives them a score 1-5 on how well they did their part. It's completely anonymous, they grade themselves and don't put their name anywhere else on the paper. It works well because the kids are usually honest, but if everyone scored someone really high that they had done all their work, but one person scored them low, it's a clue in that there might be a personal issue, rather than academic that caused a lower score.
     
  14. Rockguykev

    Rockguykev Connoisseur

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    Feb 21, 2014

    I hate assigning group jobs. They are never equal in work required and someone (usually me when I was the student) ends up doing everyone else's work anyway. I've found much greater success in having them collaborate up until the final writing portion and then requiring individual answers and then grade the other group members as:

    Helped a lot
    Helped a little
    Didn't help much
     
  15. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

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    Mar 28, 2014

    This is actually very interesting to me and has the potential to be very effective in my classroom. Thanks!
     

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