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Main page » Coursebooks » Only for teachers » Circles of Learning: Cooperation in the Classroom

Circles of Learning: Cooperation in the Classroom


Cooperative learning processes have been rediscovered and are being used throughout the country on every level. The basic elements of cooperative goal structure are positive interdependence, individual accountability, face-to-face interaction, and cooperative skills. The teacher's role in structuring cooperative learning situations involves clearly specifying lesson objectives, placing students in productive learning groups and providing appropriate materials, clearly explaining the cooperative goal structure, monitoring students, and evaluating performance. For cooperative learning groups to be productive, students must be able to engage in the needed collaborative skills. Cooperative skills and academic skills can be taught simultaneously. The implementation of cooperative learning needs to be coupled with the implementation of collaborative professional support groups among educators. Both the success of implementation efforts and the quality of life within most schools depend on teachers and other staff members cooperating with each other. Support for the program takes as careful structuring and monitoring as does cooperative learning. (JD)

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Tags: cooperative, learning, structure, students, clearly