Teachers like to incorporate cooperative learning activities into their curriculum because there are so many benefits for the students – and the class. Here are 8 advantages for using it.
Students develop higher thinking skills. Students learn to evaluate, analyze, and synthesize the information that they need to learn. They improve their reasoning and logic skills.
Students retain the information much longer when participating in cooperative learning. With activities where students merely read and memorize information, they forget everything very quickly.
Students develop responsibility. In cooperative learning groups, each individual has specific responsibilities. They learn that they need to fulfill those responsibilities because the other students are depending on them. The success of the group depends on each group member. Nobody can be a person who sits in the back of the room trying to be unnoticed.
Students develop self-confidence and self esteem. As they work on and solve difficult problems, they feel a sense of accomplishment. They realize that they CAN be successful. They can do the work and remember the material.
Along with building self-confidence, cooperative learning builds social skills. Students learn how to get along, how to take turns, how to listen politely, and how to speak politely.
Class attendance improves. When students realize that their group is depending on them, students don’t skip school. They make sure that they go to class so they can work with their team.
Through cooperative learning activities, students learn how to see things from other people’s point of view. They have to listen to what others think and seriously think about and evaluate what was said. They also develop empathy for others. They look at how decisions affect people in their group and determine whether or not it was good.
Students develop oral communication skills. When they realize that their group doesn’t ‘get’ what they said, students spend time thinking about how they could say things better to get their point across.