Group work is an effective way of learning and cooperation with others, and the aim is to learn through group cooperation and encourage all students to participate in the learning process. This approach is defined in the classroom as a group (Usually 2-6 people). The members obtain useful information from each other to extend their knowledge and abilities through the cooperation. Also this method can be helped by transferring implicit knowledge to explicit knowledge, and gain some satisfaction by self improvement and competence through the sharing. This essay is going to explain some benefits held from the group work experience, and also introduce two important tips of being successful in group work.
• Group work requires students to ask questions and explain their points of view to others. This not only assists students to increase the opportunities to apply their knowledge, but also enhances their interest and ability of learning. Moreover, it enables them to accept different opinions, extends their insights, and promotes the sustainability and development of thinking.
• Group work helps to improve learning efficiency. That would refer to every member of the group to actively participate in the learning process and activities, each member should have great enthusiasm, and learn from tasks shared by everyone. Also, it is encouraged that each member should brainstorm, and to express their point of views. Everyone is also encouraged to share their efforts and do their best with the energy created, so the problem can be solved.
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• Group work can enhance the cooperative feelings among students, and develop students’ interpersonal skills. Group work is a process of exchanging information and knowledge between students, which refers to the progress of directing the emotion and senses by communicating and helping others, and especially understanding the culture differences which refers to different backgrounds. It should be learned that to take care and help each other by recognizing their merits and also be tolerant of their shortcomings. Moreover, it is encouraged to listen with an open mind to learn from others and listen to their points of view. This will allow each member to integrate themselves into a collective team, and enhance their collective consciousness.
• Group work assists students to develop their self-learning ability. Group work involves students to participate rather than be bystanders. It encourages the student who has mastered a certain knowledge and skills to transfer and teach others who do not have themselves. Students who seek for an outstanding performance in group work must carefully learn the class material, and read through the text book analysing its content. Some contents may not be available in current text books, so it encourages students to find information by searching on the internet, and also makes some notes. These initiatives improve student learning, so that it promotes their self-learning abilities.
• Group work broadens the learning space for students. It is a process that transfers the individual competition to a collaborative group effort.
• The Panel discussed the content of cooperative learning, it is not under all condition that the group work always be the best and effective. For example, sometime we can see this kind of situation occurs: when the students in the group during cooperative learning or reporting exchanges, they either say nothing or have no consensus agreement but only form their subjective points of view. The main reason this situation occurs is that students either do not study in-depth and understand the class material thoroughly, or have no case preparation. Therefore, students should study in advance and understand the importance and highlights from the course. In addition, group work should have some interesting content, feasibility, and open inquiry by determining the input of content and time needs for cooperative group learning.
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• Do not ignore and avoid the individual accountability to think independently in the cooperative group learning. In general, group work in the classroom is based on the process of this structure, that is 1). Tasks lead the way, 2).the individual independent learning, 3).group learning, 4).group exchanges, 5).collective evaluation. In other words, for new knowledge, new information, students should think independently, so the depth of thinking, quality and originality can be developed. Through, group learning, individual opinions can be released, so everyone in the group has a chance to share the ideas and outcome of the discussion; then the group will summarize each of the information and contents, and report to the whole class by choosing a group representative. Finally, the group outcome can be viewed under evaluation of the class and by the teacher.
Group work is a cooperative learning among students through exchange in order to achieve the complementary strengths to promote knowledge of construction, fully arouse the student’s subjective consciousness, explore their subject of personalized learning, and developing students’ creativity and innovation. Also, it makes students learn in an open atmosphere, and carry out active exchanges of information and knowledge; thus enhancing self-confidence, promoting for the best practice of opportunities. In addition to developing students’ sense of competition, the collective values and spirit of cooperation, so that establishes a corresponding development for different students.
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