Talking and Learning in Groups (Leverhulme Primary Project by Neville Bennett, Elizabeth Dunne

By Neville Bennett, Elizabeth Dunne

First released in 1990. Routledge is an imprint of Taylor & Francis, an informa corporation.

Show description

By Neville Bennett, Elizabeth Dunne

First released in 1990. Routledge is an imprint of Taylor & Francis, an informa corporation.

Show description

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Extra info for Talking and Learning in Groups (Leverhulme Primary Project Classroom Skills)

Example text

Richard: Brill, finished. Do you think that’s a perfect…? Tania: I’m going to make another one because I did that one wrong. It won’t stick up like that. Something’s wrong there. Susan: Oh, I have to do this again, it’s rubbish. Tania, I have to do this again cos it’s rubbish, isn’t it? Peter: I’ve finished nearly—ha, ha. Teacher: Well you must ask the rest of your group, because you might not have done. I didn’t hear you asking anyone. Richard: I asked Tania—the nearest. It can be seen here that, although the task itself does not demand cooperation, the teacher wants the children to work together, to help each other, to be aware of what others are doing and how they are working.

When she monitored two sessions she found that: ‘…a total of 27 demands were made upon me during the space of 30 minutes during an integrated day. Of these 27 demands almost half, 13, in fact, were demands for me to evaluate partly completed or completed tasks. All demands were made by individual children needing help or reassurance about their own work. During the second demand session there were far fewer demands made upon my time. e. ”’ These children were aged seven to eight and were able to adjust their behaviour immediately when requested to do so.

Our own belief is that they should, at least some of the time, but this is an issue which each teacher must resolve to their own satisfaction. As yet we have insufficient evidence to know whether single sex or mixed sex groups work better. CHOOSING GROUPS 35 CHILDREN’S PERSONALITY There are other important factors to consider when deciding on group composition. The quotes from teachers below illuminate these, as they explain how they choose their groups. Teacher A ‘I decided to mix boys and girls in the groups… I decided to mix Junior with Top Infants, and Top Infants with Middle Infants, otherwise the age range might be too wide… I had to consider the children’s personalities together with age and ability.

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