This week I studied cooperative learning. These strategies correlate to social learning theories. Dr. Orey noted that it is important for students to work together and bounce ideas off of each other because it builds their confidence (Laureate, Inc., 2011). Students are often excited to work in cooperative groups and feel a sense of pride for their role in the group. It is important to keep groups small and have the students take responsibility for their learning. This type of learning prepares them for the workplace where they will be required to work together on a problem using technology.
The class resources had many exciting ideas for ways to include technology in the classroom during cooperative learning. One of the resources that I look forward to incorporating in my classroom is http://secondlife.com/. On this blog, http://secondlife.com/, teachers can gain ideas for how to use Second Life in the classroom. Students can work together to solve a problem in the virtual world. Students should be given a rubric for the multimedia project and an advanced organizer for the group tasks (Pitler, et al., 2011)
Another site that allows students to collaborate with people all over the world is http://voicethread.com/. I often use this tool for students to have discussions and work with their peers. Recently, I helped a teacher create a voice thread for her students to peer edit. It was engaging and allowed them to collaborate in the learning. My students are currently reading “George Washington’s Socks” and will be completing the next set of discussion questions using a voice thread. They will have to support their ideas with details from the text and build off other students’ responses.
On this voice thread http://voicethread.com/share/2687352/, I worked with my colleagues to share a current problem we are having at school. Please take a look and let me know what you would do to solve this problem.
Laureate Education, Inc. (Producer). (2011). Program eight: Social learning theories [Video webcast]. Bridging learning theory, instruction and technology. Retrieved from http://laureate.ecollege.com/ec/crs/default.learn?CourseID=5700267&CPURL=laureate.ecollege.com&Survey=1&47=2594577&ClientNodeID=984650&coursenav=0&bhcp=1.
Palmer, G., Peters, R., & Streetman, R. (2003). Cooperative learning. In M. Orey (Ed.), Emerging perspectives on learning, teaching, and technology. Retrieved , from http://projects.coe.uga.edu/epltt/
Pitler, H., Hubbell, E., Kuhn, M., & Malenoski, K. (2007). Using technology with classroom instruction that works. Alexandria, VA: ASCD.