Series: Tch Tips

Three Ways to Encourage Student Collaboration

Lesson Objective: Help students learn from each other
All Grades / All Subjects / Collaboration


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Thought starters

  1. How does taking think time set students up for successful collaboration?
  2. How could you explicitly teach listening skills and talking norms?
  3. How does assigning roles facilitate successful collaboration?

I think the first step giving the students time to think by themselves is extremely important.  It gives the student time to actually think deeper about the question/lesson that is presented.  When we ask a question and expect a immediate response the student can't really dive into the question and they just start to memorize instead of actually learn about the subject. I thought the piece on creating the groups was good also.  We have to know how to group certain students together and make sure every student is being challenged and involved in the lesson with their group.  Can't be afraid to change the group if it is not working was a great point also have to give the students every opportunity to succeed. 

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How does taking think time set students up for successful collaboration?

Think time provides time for independent thinking in order to establish reasons, predictions, answers prior to questions posed, opinions presented, or concepts delivered by someone speaking to them. Students can assess where they are in regards to a concept by working in pairs.  Working in pairs provides for peer support and develops listening and speaking schools within rules of engagement  constructed by the teacher to support these skills.

How could you explicitly teach listening skills and talking norms?

Listening and talking norms can be taught by creating rules through classroom collaboration, teacher / adult modeling of expected behaviors, use of role playing, etc.  The video suggested pairing "chatties with quiets" and ELL with English wholly students to play to student strengths and foster peer support. Assigning roles would also determine who might be asking what which would focus conversation around the concept being taught.

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Ideas from this video will be useful to me in my classroom due to the fact that my students have difficulty with the English language.  They can engage in partner talk to strengthen their vocabulary and learn to work together as a team.  

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This video provides great examples of collaboration.  It shares three ways in which students can demonstrate collaboration.  They are collaboration using think time, partner talk in which each partner discusses, and assign a role where students take part in a role and are responsible for it.  Each of these help build student collaboration.  It was a great video that helped build self confidence for any students who do not feel comfortable enough to talk to each other.  

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 This video taught me how important it is for teachers to give their students time to think independently before they get partnered up. I liked how the video mentioned different ways to keep the students engaged and focused on the topic of discussion. 

My question would be how do new teachers know how to partnered up their students?

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  • - - This is going to be your think time alone, off you go. Individual think time gives each child

    - - This is going to be your think time alone, off you go. Individual think time gives each child time to think and reason before someone speaks to them. Turn and talk about it with somebody at your table, and see where you are. - So one of the strategies I use in my classroom is rug partners, and it's structured with rules of listening skills, and talking norms. The reason I do that is just to get the juices flowing - Keep the conversation going. - I would say, pair your chattys with your quiets and your ELLs with your english-only students so that they are able to really help each other and build on each other's strengths. - So when you came in today you each got a sticker, okay, those are your job stickers for today for our investigation - So in trying to create a good collaborative role in the classroom, I definitely think at first the teachers have to assign jobs to the students, but then eventually move to where that is a student choice. - I think one of the most important things is to know your student's personalities and which students are going to be dominant, which ones are going to kinda sit back and listen. - I also, think that teachers have to be willing to change those groups, the groups can't remain the same every time and all the time. - Remember, don't forget the measurement.

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