Cooperative Exercises and Examples
There are lots of ways to use cooperative learning in your classroom. These links will take you to other areas of the Starting Point site with resources that can be adapted using the techniques of cooperative learning.
- Indoor Labs: especially if a written report is involved
- Outdoor Labs: again, especially if they do a written report
- Independent Research Projects: works well with jigsawing, can involve data or models
- Peer Review: works well with pairs
- Jigsaws: this structured format lets each team member prepare separate but related assignments, then share their work with peer teaching
- Interactive Cases: these open-ended investigations require cooperation
- Team Games: you'll want to add individual accountability
- Interactive Role-Playing: scenarios and roles can be written to ensure that all students are part of cooperative teams
- Reviewing journal articles: You may want to create interdependence by assigning several articles and give different ones to different group members.
- Studio Courses: Traditional courses can be reorganized into a more student-centered model (see also Williamson and Rowe, 2002 and Savarese, 1988 ).
Below, you can browse through examples of cooperative learning that have already been developed. You can use them "as is" or let them serve as models for you to develop your own.
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Geologic Puzzles: Morrison Formation part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Interactive Lectures:Examples
Images of faulted strata, tilted turbidites, and beach rocks bring the field into the classroom, giving students practice in doing what geoscientists do. These images are examples of geologic puzzles. -
2004 Asian Earthquake and Tsunami Disaster Project part of Examples
Students are employees of a unit of the United Nations responsible for coordinating disaster relief after a major disaster (the 2004 Asian Earthquake and Tsunami) occurs. The agency needs to understand the ...
Transnational Pollution: Why Are You Dumping on Me? part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Role Playing:Examples
The purpose of this lesson is to familiarize students with the different types of transnational pollution, by having them role-play in a hypothetical disaster on the Danube River. -
Reducing Volcanic Hazards to People and Property - An Assignment with Electronic Peer Review part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Peer Review:Examples
This electronic peer review exercise has students discuss the major volcanic hazards and risks to humans. -
Calibrated Peer ReviewTM: Introduction - Why Study Geology? part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Peer Review:Examples
Sarah Andrews is a geologist who has also written a series of successful mystery novels featuring (naturally) a geologist who solves crimes in her spare time. Students read her article, "Why Study ...
Mars Landing Site Selection: An exercise in reading geologic maps and other geologic data sets part of Cutting Edge:Discoveries from Mars:Activities
Students use available Mars data to select the next rover landing sites, given appropriate engineering, geologic and biologic constraints. -
Lab using Volcano Scenarios: Hazard Maps and Communicating Risk part of Cutting Edge:Student Learning: Observing and Assessing:Activities
This is a lab activity in which small groups of students work with maps, rocks, photographs of volcanic deposits, and textual data to construct a hazard map and a risk communication plan for a specific volcano. Each group is assigned a "volcano scenario," which is based on real volcanoes.
An Activity to Introduce the Geoscience Perspective part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Role Playing:Examples
This role-playing exercise introduces students to geology by having them examine rocks from the perspective of a child, a sculptor, a geologist or someone from another walk of life. -
Plate Tectonics writing assignment suitable for Calibrated Peer Review part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Peer Review:Examples
This is an example of a writing assignment focussed on the use of data to support the theory of plate tectonics. -
Determining the Geologic History of Rocks from a Gravel Deposit part of Examples
Gravels deposited as a result of continental glaciation are used to teach introductory-level earth-science students the application of the scientific method in a cooperative learning mode which utilizes hands-on, ...