May 9, 2019
Group Study

Ideas for Constructive Group Activities

Group study can be a great tool to implement in any classroom. Sometimes a student may be stuck on a problem or idea and the constant lecturing from the teacher is not making the problem any clearer.  It can be helpful to hear another person’s perspective on the topic in order to make it clear for the student. It can be beneficial to work with other students. The student who understands the idea gets to test themselves as they teach others to see if they truly understand the topic. Students who are stuck may have something click when they hear what another student has to say.

Studying in groups, can help students learn more effectively.  Research by educational psychologists has shown that when students work together in collaborative teams in classrooms, they learn material better than when they sit alone at their desks.

Here are some ideas for constructive group work activities:

Pass the ball or bean bag

This can be used as a review game, and would involve the teacher, perhaps to review for an upcoming exam. First, have the students sit in a circle, then, ask a question. Give the students a few seconds to think of the answer, then toss the ball to someone (at random) to answer the question. If the student answers correctly they can toss the ball back to you. If they answer incorrectly they can toss the ball to another student. The game would continue, and this would be a good way for the students to remember the questions and answers better.

Student lead learning stations

When teaching a lesson break the lesson into different topics. Give each group a topic and tell them they will have to present the concept to the class. The students will work harder to learn their subject when they know they must teach someone else how to do it. This allows the students to work together in their groups and then work together as a whole class. Encourage the students to ask each other questions and really understand the topic at hand.  The students can rotate stations after a few minutes of reviewing, this would be a great review time right before a big test, especially if the student’s grades are heavily weighted by the outcome of the test.

Partner work

When working on different topics in math, you can have the students work together on problems. You may be able to pair a student who is doing well with a student who is struggling with the concept. So as to avoid singling students out, have the students take turns working through problems, and showing their work to each other, The student who is grasping the concept better can slow down and instruct the student who may be stuck on the topic, bringing better understanding to the You may also use this opportunity to match students together who are at similar levels. They can talk to each other and see if they are getting stuck at the same place or different places. If it is different places they may be able to help each other out and if they are stuck in the same place it can show you as the teacher where you need to be spending more time in your instruction.