It's too easy to point out Confucius' saying that ends with "I do and I understand". But it's also true! Learners must be highly involved in experiential teaching strategies to be successful 21st century citizens.

Ingredients:

Two teaspoons of task – tenacity plus

A cup of organization skills plus

Three tablespoons of communication plus

A half cup of creative thinking plus

A pound of collaborative skills!

Look at your students / learners. Let them form their own groups or use the recipe above? I say for the most part you and they are better served by your using the recipe! Most every group in a simulation needs individuals with a variety of skills and dispositions to make the process run smoothly.

So yes you need some or at least one group member who is tenacious, that is, knows what the group’s and probably each group member’s responsibilities and goals and has the people skills to help others recognize their tasks and responsibilities too.

So yes you need someone with organizational skills, that is, someone who can keep track of the tasks, keep records, and forms, and watch the timelines as they evolve amongst the processes.

So yes you need all of the learners, hopefully at least the majority, who can communicate with each other. Not only that according to the simulation’s dynamics, someone who can communicate with other groups too. Sometimes this involves writing skills, at minimum it involves not only the ability to talk TO others clearly but ALSO the ability to HEAR what other folks are trying to say too.

So yes you need creative thinkers too, that is, learners who will recognize that the choices and actions they take are not so rigid and prescriptive that they will realize that there are many ways to solve the issues and tasks before them.

Above all, you need lots and lots of learners, hopefully a critical mass in each group, who flat out know how to collaborate with each other. Notice I  did not say cooperate. Co-labor-ate means to work  TOGETHER and all of what that implies!

So in the end, your best chance to get the “cake” you want, would have all these ingredients in the right proportion.

And then there’s the “cook” aka YOU. What is / are your role(s)?

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Comments on: "It’s All in the Group Recipe" (2)

  1. Similarly, I just wrote a blog about the role of technology in Education. http://www.learningxxi.blogspot.com. You are in the money,

  2. Great article. I would suggest the teacher should form the early groups until they gain that skill. I would also use some UDL type analysis for group formation.

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