Learning in groups

February 21, 2019

Articles and research on group learning are prolific.

Group learning benefits life-long success in many ways. Here at Crossroads, children learn in groups throughout the day in every class. While we are always talking about the benefits of individual instruction for our students, it’s also important to note that the ability to participate in group activities and lessons is something that children also are working on and increasing. This will help them work alongside of others as they progress in school, and in other settings such as work someday.
Because it’s awesome to see the classrooms in action, this post is here to share a great learning unit that was recently implemented in one of the classrooms. It’s chock full of group activities, and you’re sure to love it.

Here, children in Room 8 recently enjoyed a week long unit for the Chinese New Year. It was planned by Teaching Assistant, Ms. Shannon, much to the appreciation of Special Education Teacher,  Ms. Susanna. Throughout the week, students in the class interacted in an abundant number of exciting activities. They learned about an interesting and diverse celebration, and about another country, on another continent.

 

Here, Ms. Susanna has the students choosing rhythm instruments from a bin.

They don masks that they’ve made earlier in the week.
Next, they put on a parade.

 

As Room 8’s parade marches the downstairs hallway, groups of students from other classrooms come out to watch.
Everyone loves a parade!

Another activity this group enjoyed was targeted at their fine motor skills. It also provided lots of sensory reinforcement. Rice bins with Chinese food takeout containers, coins and chopsticks engrossed the class at length and exercised their pincer and manipulation abilities.


Another was washing oranges, which are considered to be a symbol of good fortune in the Chinese New Year tradition.

 

The class also decorated their hallway with posters with good fortunes on them.

 

The children delighted in looking at their pictures and those of their friends. Additionally, they were able to work on generalizing skills such as letters, words, colors and pictures of places, people and objects.  

 

Group learning is recognized as leading to success in education, college and the professional work world. Positive group experiences, in which children learn to work on common tasks together, model and act as modelers, take turns, share and otherwise work collaboratively, are an important part of what students need to gain the skills for success in life.

 


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