Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Cooperative Learning Tools - Training, Training & more training

I'm sorry for being MIA, I packed most of my summer training in the past week and this week! My head is still spinning from all of the wonderful ideas I got. I attended trainings on iPads, writing with Barry Lane & Gretchen Bernabei, and Kagan cooperative learning. They were all fabulous!!

I really enjoyed the Kagan training. I have never been to an official Kagan training before, but it is all we used during undergrad. I was fortunate to have a professor who is a Kagan trainer. {If you have a chance - I highly suggest going!} The one I went to was a 2 day conference that focused on ELL's.  It is amazing how well cooperative structures lend themselves to students acquiring a new language!

While I really love Kagan and all of their materials, a lot of their things are EXPENSIVE!!! I highly suggest to spend the $$$ on the trainings & books - they're worth it. However, for tools, I borrow their ideas and come up with alternatives.

Timers & Selectors
For timers, I love to use online-stopwatch, they have very cute timers! They even have an interval timer, that you can set up for teams and have 4 different timers going {similar to Kagan's bar timer} There are also tons of timers for Smartboards.

Selectors are another really fun tool! If you have your students set up in groups of 4, I always have each student numbered {#1-4}, with these selectors, you can either put students names or just the numbers 1, 2, 3, & 4 {similar to how Kagan's work}
  • Random Name Selector - you can either put your Ss name in there, or you can just put #1-4 and it will select one. It also has a stopwatch on the same site. The best part, it saves your student's names!
  • Dart Selector - is another cute one, but it doesn't save your list of names or numbers, so you may have to keep it up on your screen at all times. 
  • Super Teacher Tools - You can create a class (either by name/#) and use it as a name selector, but you can also use it to randomly creates students into groups. It saves your info too!
  • Random Name Picker - This will allow you to enter student names/#'s and it uses a slot machine to choose the name/#.
  • Stick Pick - iPhone app. This one is pretty fancy and keeps track of correct responses by students. 
  • Kagan also has some apps that are pretty inexpensive {2.99 each} for selectors & timers!

I have lots of ideas for some of their other tools - and I will share with you as I make them! Here are some other great resources that I have found that are either free or very inexpensive!
  • Cooperative 365- A blog dedicated to cooperative learning and has amazing resources!

Don't forget to enter my giveaway - there are LOTS of great prizes!!!!


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