Collaborative Student Groups

Workshop

Workshop is a powerful strategy that provides my students with a degree of choice in how they learn the content in my blended learning classroom. It is also a method of holding them accountable for their choices. I believe that it's important for my students to learn how to manage their time and how to evaluate their learning options so that they can grow closer to taking charge of their own education. Each day, student groups receive "tallies"--ratings for moving quickly, making smooth transitions, and employing responses that feature academic vocabulary and professionalism. I use these tallies to determine the order in which student groups select their blended learning stations on the following day. 

Strategy Resources (5)
Students In Action
 
 
Lesson Plan
 
 
This is an example of my plan for Workshop from the early part of the year. Note that students are selected to be in tutoring based on two different assessments.
Poster
 
 
The Workshop Board is the student-facing display of available stations and work. Depending on how much choice I give students on a specific day, the structure of the Workshop Board changes.
Student Data
 
 
This is the accountablity document that I created to help with two potential issues. First, there is a fear that students will only do the activities that they want rather than what they need. Next, in that scenario, students may not be getting access to all the opportunites in the classroom. Note the grade section, I give this a monthly grade. Also, the starred items can receive bonuses.
Strategy Explanation
 
 
This flowchart shows how I make groups for two week increments of Workshop, using the formative assessments of the previous two weeks. The groups will come to tutoring or work together in the group model of Workshop.
Students In Action
 
 
Poster
 
 
The Workshop Board is the student-facing display of available stations and work. Depending on how much choice I give students on a specific day, the structure of the Workshop Board changes.
Strategy Explanation
 
 
This flowchart shows how I make groups for two week increments of Workshop, using the formative assessments of the previous two weeks. The groups will come to tutoring or work together in the group model of Workshop.
Lesson Plan
 
 
This is an example of my plan for Workshop from the early part of the year. Note that students are selected to be in tutoring based on two different assessments.
Student Data
 
 
This is the accountablity document that I created to help with two potential issues. First, there is a fear that students will only do the activities that they want rather than what they need. Next, in that scenario, students may not be getting access to all the opportunites in the classroom. Note the grade section, I give this a monthly grade. Also, the starred items can receive bonuses.
Daniel Utset-Guerrero
Holmes Elementary School
Miami, FL


 

About this strategy

Prep Time:
Long
Subject:
Math
Grade:
Fifth grade
Similar Strategies
Routines and Procedures
Rotation Expectations

Before my students begin our system of rotations at the beginning of the year, I take time to make it very clear where they will go, what they will do, and what materials they will need. I also make sure to do frequent checks for understanding. Dedicating extra time to review Rotation Expectations at the beginning of the year helps to ensure that rotations will run smoothly throughout the year. Class tutors are also selected for each rotation. They walk around to support their peers who need help and even help to manage class behavior. Class tutors are given an iPad with access to our ClassDojo site, where they award "positive points" to students following expectations and "needs improvement points" to those who are not following expectations. Through explaining my expectations and leveraging the class tutor to reinforce these expectations, I ensure that my students are giving their best efforts during our rotations.

 
Assessment & Data
Leveled Interventions

While the majority of students are working on leveled online practice, I pull groups for leveled interventions. In these targeted small gropus, I give support to students practicing the same level so they can advance to the next level. We identify the skill at hand, work on some practice problems using white boards, and then spend time working on the online practice individually. Students have the opportunity to collaborate, supporting each other in figuring out the skill to pass the level.

 
Collaborative Student Groups
Friday Review

Friday Review is a one-day activity designed to address specific needs and growth areas for each student. Using very recent data (from Exit Tickets or formative assessments), I identify specific skills that each student needs reinforcement with. Throughout class, students rotate through either small group lessons with me or individualized activities at their tables. When students work with me, they work on remedial practice to make sure they fill in any gaps in their understanding. While working independently, students work on various activities, including targeted online practice, practice worksheets, and hands-on activities, all selected and designed based on assessment data. Though my students work with their peers at times, they rotate through activities based on their individualized schedules, working towards their personal goals. At the end of the block, all of my students take an Exit Ticket (please see the "Daily Exit Tickets" strategy video) to measure their mastery. This allows me to track their growth and to plan how to support students who need additional practice.

 
 
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