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Topic: Who Uses Group/Cooperative learning?
Replies: 7   Last Post: Jun 29, 1995 4:31 PM

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Posts: 7
Registered: 12/6/04
Re: Who Uses Group/Cooperative learning?
Posted: Jun 26, 1995 10:59 AM
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On Sun, 25 Jun 1995 wrote:

> I would like to initiate a discussion 0n the question "Why do so few
> teachers, grades 9-university use interactive learning techniques i.e. groups/
> cooperative/team learning?"

I have wondered about this issue in a broader sense for a number of
years. The underlying question seems to be "Why do so few teachers,
especially university level, fail to base instruction on current
knowledge of learning theory and effective teaching methods?"

It was always interesting to me that even in the College of Education
many professors seemed to instruct by the "Do as I say, not as I do
method" where students received, enmasse, lectures and reading material
about individualizing instruction, for example. There was no modeling.

I have considered a couple of causes for this:

I remember talking to a couple of friends who were doctoral students
(political science or some such thing) and had the usual number of
classes to teach as grad assistants. They were very knowledgable in their
field, but my question to them was "Where have you learned HOW to
teach?" I got blank stares. The attitude was, if I know the subject
well enough, of course I can teach it. So, I wonder if upper level
instructors have ever been taught to teach and so teach the way they
were taught---mainly lecture from an expert?

The other possibility I have considered is that somewhere along the line
an attitude or belief developes that says "Little kids learn one way, but
adults are something else and the same rules no longer apply" Certainly
some of the structure, amount of independence, etc. changes as we grow
older, but it seems to me that when we approach a new topic--LEARNING IS
LEARNING. Whether we are dealing with a first grader or inservice
teachers, the same attention to the individual, group work, practice,
discovery, etc. needs to take place.

So, take the average professor who was never really taught how to teach
and believes that the adults he is "teaching" know how to learn and only
need information from him----will the articles on group/cooperative
learning even make sense?

I don't know. Just some thoughts. Comments?........

Rosemary Beck
Technology Coordinator/Resource Math Teacher
Holaway Elementary School
Tucson AZ

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