Collaboration in the Classroom: Fostering Critical Thinking Skills- 2012 Workshop

Presenter: Nancy Fox

A)    Collaborative Exercise

I. Attendees will be placed into six groups.
II. Each group will perform the following tasks:

  • Define collaboration based upon each group member’s prior knowledge.
  • List the purpose or usefulness of collaboration.
  • List the benefits of collaboration.
  • List the concerns instructors have about collaborative assignments.
  • Determine whether or not collaboration is worth the efforts involved.

III. All of the group information will be collated into a word file.
IV. As a class, the best responses will be chosen and recorded in a word file.

 B)    Current Research and Ideas for the Classroom

I. We will compare our collaborative word file to what current research reveals.

  1. Definition
    1. Purpose
    2. Benefits
    3. Backbone
    4. Concerns
    5. Total value

II. Collaboration in today’s academic environment

  1. Quality Enhancement Program (QEP)
  2. High Impact Practices in the classroom
  3. Higher Order of Thinking Assignments
  4. NCTE writing guidelines
  5. Teacher load – grading and lessons plans

III. Classroom Collaboration – COG’s Ladder (Collaborative Operations Groups)

  1. Worksheets – scaffolding lessons
  2. Note cards – take questions from students for the next lesson or discussion
  3. Empathetic activities – creating collaborative rubrics/students evaluating each other
  4. Student led teaching
  5. Creating primary research through social media such as texting, tweeting, and Facebook

IV. Implementation

  1. The internet contains a plethora of ways to create collaborative web sites.  The following are YouTube video examples.
    1. Collaboration Strategies

  1. Specific instructions about how to create a Google website for your classroom