Contributed by Molly Daysh
Group work is a trend that can have a positive impact on student learning, especially with diverse learners. When grouping students, teachers have the advantage of placing diverse learners with students who may have already grasped a particular concept so as to help those who may struggle with particular lessons. With group work, students work together to complete and create projects while also learning how to cooperate and how to work as a team. “The concept of students working in groups also promotes a setting where collaboration and cooperation are valued and produce better results, teaching the students valuable life-long skills that are important in the professional workplace” (CIRT: Center for Innovation in Research and Teaching", n.d.). Another advantage of group work is that the students are able to “teach” each other which helps with comprehension for all students (CIRT: Center for Innovation in Research and Teaching", n.d.).
Some instructional issues may arise with the use of group work for diverse learners, in particular it is crucial that the teacher has created a lesson that allows for all members of the group to participate fully (CIRT: Center for Innovation in Research and Teaching", n.d.). Much monitoring, by the instructor, is important so as to be sure that work is being done by all, and the lesson's objectives are being met. Also, some students may be uncomfortable working with others and may learn best working as an individual.
Group work is a trend that can be applied to both math and science lessons.