Cooperative learning in the classroom can help students enhance their knowledge to a great extent.
Cooperative learning involves working in a group and accomplishing the given tasks in a given time. Nowadays, this learning method is being encouraged in classroom activities to increase the students' depth of knowledge.
What is it?
In cooperative learning, students work along with their peers and complete the work, which is given to them by their teachers.
For a systematic approach to complete the work, they need to have qualities such as team-spirit, problem solving ability, communication skills, etc.
In this type of learning, students can have one member as the group leader. This group leader can assign his group members individual tasks. The team members will report all their work to the team leader.
The most important aspect of the job of the team leader is to evaluate the work of each member of his team.
In case of any problems or errors, he can ask the members to redo their task till they achieve perfection.
At the same time, he must be open to hear creative and constructive opinions from the members.
This method gives equal importance to each member of the team.
In cooperative learning, the teacher does the job of a facilitator by inspecting the job done by all the groups.
The team members work for the success of their team and not for individual success.
They have to forget their individual pride, self-interest, and narrow-minded attitude for the larger interest of the team.
They also have to assist each other in times of difficulties.
The credit for the success of the work will naturally go to the entire team, and not to any particular member. The members have a positive interdependence on each other.
By communicating with each other, they get to learn the good qualities of their fellow team members.
The traditional ways of learning involves working individually without seeking opinion from fellow colleagues.
Students following this technique will remain unaware of the new methods and techniques of problem solving.
The total output of their working together will naturally be more than when they work individually.
The quality of work delivered by students working in a group will also be far better as compared to the ones working individually. This is because in a group, every act or suggestion is cross-checked by other members and hence, chances of errors in work are minimum.
This method can also speed up the completion of the task, as those working in the group will complete their work faster than those working individually.
It is also helpful in the development of social skills, as it develops self-esteem of the students participating in various creative activities.
Cooperative learning also inculcates values such as sacrifice for team, team building, adjusting to different conditions, tolerance, respecting colleagues, etc.
Such a form of learning should be made a part of the modern educational system, since it is more practical and useful for students, and will produce talented and efficient leaders whom we need for tomorrow.