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Email of the Day
'Group Learning' Epic Failure
'Group Learning' Epic Failure
01/25/2012

I am writing you about your commentary on group learning in schools.

I am 23 and graduated from one of the top 5 teaching universities in the country with a 4.0 GPA. After graduating, I never pursued a teaching position mostly because my husband is a real man and supports me being a stay-at-home-mommy. I have YOU to thank for that. (Hugs)

While school days are years ahead for us with our child, schooling has been in the back of my head. With a background in education, I know I would make a great home-school teacher, but I worry: Aren't kids social learners?  Don't they need to learn in groups? During my 4 years of schooling, group learning was pushed, praised, and even required as we entered the field as student teachers.

Educators dress it up, and give it a fancy name like 'collaborative learning' or 'cooperative learning'. Entire courses are dedicated to teaching educators how to group children and 'teach' them. So I’m not surprised 'group' learning is showing up in classrooms more and more.

It’s no secret we have a broken school system; so group learning is a tool that educators use to keep afloat. There are many reasons educators use group learning as a crutch, but one I saw the most was to have the advanced learners peer-tutor the kiddos who had fallen behind: in other words, using children to teach children. Why? Because there is no time to spend one-on-one with each child and give them what they so desperately need.

It’s not even a great idea in theory, but can you imagine how much work actually gets accomplished? Instead of allowing our advanced learners to excel at work on their level, they are stuck being the secondary, un-paid educators in the classroom. Really, it’s very ironic if you ask me - I had to go to college for 4 years to be able to be a teacher, yet we find it adequate to release that responsibility to 8 year olds. I think I want my money back on my degree.  I wanted to bring attention to the fact colleges are teaching and forcing future educators to teach this way. In fact, I was never truly instructed how to properly conduct whole group instruction and I was one of the top students in my class...in one of the top schools in the nation.

Homeschooling it is...

Sincerely,

Breanna

Tags: Education, Read On-Air, Response to a Comment
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