SciLinks and cooperative learning

Earlier this month, I was asked to search for and upload resources on cooperative learning for SciLinks (use the keyword “community collaborations”). There were many good sites, although some were published in the 1990s (interesting but a bit outdated) and were therefore not added to SciLinks. However, I found some newer sites that would be useful as a refresher, to find some new ideas, or to get started with this effective instructional strategy
Powerful Learning: Studies Show Deep Understanding Derives from Collaborative Methods was recently published on the Edutopia website. The authors (Brigid Barron and Linda Darling-Hammond) summarize research findings and provide examples of student collaborative projects. Download their expanded article Teaching for Meaningful Learning for more information (including links to video resources) and for a list of research studies and other professional writing on the topic.
The Science Education Resource Center (SERC) at Carleton College has an excellent resource “Teaching Entry Level Geoscience.” Although it’s designed for teachers of undergraduate courses, the teaching strategies are applicable to younger students as well (and include descriptions of gallery walks, field labs, role-playing, teaching with Google Earth, and others). The section on Cooperative Learning has lots of suggestions on this topic.
Cooperative and Collaborative Learning is a resource from WNET Thirteen Ed Online in its Concept to Classroom project. The four parts of the site guide the user through background information and suggestions for implementation: Explanation, Demonstration, Exploration, Implementation. Throughout this site, the emphasis is on real classrooms and includes ideas for assessment and a discussion of some challenges that might be encountered. There are video clips of actual classrooms (including science classes) using cooperative learning, too.

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