Friday, July 31, 2015

Group Work Expectations

My students work in groups almost every class.  I teach on a modified block schedule, so all my classes with them are 85 minutes.  We can't take notes for 85 minutes. (Or is it that I can't give notes for 85 minutes).

So, we work in groups and it generally goes really well.  My first year, I chose groups which we changed about once a quarter.  They were set up to be people that would work together well, quiet people with friends who would help them, slow workers together, etc.  It was great and it helped a lot of students.  Last year, for some reason, a lot of the time the students picked their own groups.  I let them choose at the beginning of the year, and they just worked really well in their own chosen groups.  I'm going back to hand-chosen groups this year.  It cuts down on the drama, and I think it reinforces that we're in this group for a very specific purpose, not just hanging with friends.

I do want to be really clear with my students what I expect from them.  So, I'm going to reference some 'expectations,' which I'll hang on the wall.  Here is a link to an editable dropbox file:
And here are images of the poster (both pages).  The font I used is Hello Just Sayin.

The cups are traffic light cups to help me understand where groups are.  I like it 1) as a group self-assessment tool, 2) as a way for the group to have to talk to each other, not just to me, and 3) as a quick way for me to see how we're doing.  Too many red cups tells me we should regroup and review.
 I got the idea from Sarah at Math=Love, and I'm excited to use it.

What do you think?  Are my expectations clear?  Do they cover the basics?  

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for including the editable file


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