Effective Group Work in the Primary Classroom

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    Presentations

    • Students can prepare presentations as a group, giving each student the chance to exercise a variety of skills. Assign children to create a presentation on a current topic of study, such as an animal or a country, within small groups. Students will then have to divide the work. Types of work include creating posters, writing up the speech and researching. Have kids record who completed each aspect of the project, to encourage each member to take an active role. Have students present the material as a group as well, which will show the students the importance of organizing the material and working together for a smooth presentation.

    Reading Discussion and Analysis

    • Have students discuss and analyze reading material as a group. Some aspects of a piece may be clear to one student, but a bit murky to another. Having the group discuss iwill allow students to help each other in understanding a book in a low pressure setting. Students may feel more comfortable asking questions of each other than asking questions in front of the entire class. Give each group a list of questions to answer with regards to the material. This will serve as a starting point for discussion, and really help to get kids thinking deeper about topics such as character development and story points.

    Problem Solving

    • Have students work together to solve problems derived from various subjects. Often lessons aren't enough for material to sink in. Many kids require a more hands-on approach to learning subjects that surround logic. The problems can be mathematical or even those relating to real life situations. Students can work through the problems together, posing questions to each other. Instruct students to record answers, along with any steps taken to come up with the answer. This is also excellent practice for the homework that students may have to do later on, without a group.

    Written Report

    • Students can create a written report surrounding a current topic of interest, as a group. Written work requires a lot of effort and organization. Students should section off aspects of the compilation amongst the group. For example, students can each research and write a section of the report, and work together to create the cover page and any image inserts. This project encourages focus and diligence. As with the oral presentation, have kids record the roles taken in the project and discuss the outcome with you individually in the end. This will prevent one person from completing all of the work, encouraging all students to get involved.

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