Teaching Smart? When I hear those words, I think of my recent training with cooperative learning. Even though I have had cooperative learning training before, I got to experience it with Dr. Kagan! What I love about cooperative learning is that every child has an opportunity. For example, when I'm sharing a story whole group, I stop and ask questions along the way. I ask them to discuss their answers with their shoulder partner. Every child gets an opportunity to talk, versus one at a time if I was to just call one at a time. Afterwards, I have them raise their hands to share what their partner told them. One of the first cooperative learning structures I teach my kinderkids is StandUp-HandUp-PairUp. We use this daily for sharing. There are poster sets for sale that I have on my wish list. However, in each set, there are different structures that I use and do not use at this time. So I created one of my own, so I can make a poster.
Google Docs Link:
For example, after writing, we share our journals daily with this structure. They write independently at their seats as I wander around helping individual children. I give the 5 minute and 1 minute signs that it will be time to share soon. Then I ask them to "Stand Up". They stand up and hold their journals. Then I ask them to "Hand Up", each child raises one hand. Last I say "Pair Up", and they walk around and high five a partner, sit down, and share their journals. Sometimes I give directions about who goes first or let them choose on their own depending on my class. When sharing, one reads while the other listens. Then the listener gives compliments (stars) and maybe one suggestion (a wish). Then they switch roles. If I have an even number of students, I walk around and interact with pairs. If I have an odd number of students, then I also walk around with my hand up. When they are done sharing their journals, they know to stand up again and look for a new partner. This is great for interaction amongst my kinderkids. They have novelty (meeting with a new friend when sharing) and movement (walking in an area to find a new partner) which both are great for their learning brains! Click below to see what other bloggers have for "Teaching Smart" or "Freebies".