Cooperative learning

A group of girls passing a rugby ball.

The cooperative learning approach assumes that developing your self-knowledge and self-respect are prerequisites for functioning effectively in group situations. Teaching and learning in health and physical education often occurs in small groups and team situations. Successful group experiences can contribute to knowledge, self-esteem, and empowerment as ākonga accomplish group goals.

A cooperative learning programme includes the following components:

  • Positive interdependence – working in groups with assigned roles to achieve common goals.
  • Individual accountability – being equally responsible for the group's success and therefore being held accountable.
  • Group processing – reflecting on how their group functioned in working towards the goals.
  • Social skills – included in ways that ākonga can identify their use and purpose.

Cooperative learning involves a deliberate transformation of individuals into committed and productive team members. During this process ākonga are likely to progress through a series of stages:

  • Forming – coming together and getting acquainted
  • Storming – finding areas of disagreement and conflict
  • Norming – defining areas of agreement and cooperation
  • Performing – working collegially toward group goals

Cooperative learning provides students opportunities to:

  • be committed to a group
  • learn and apply interpersonal skills
  • take responsibility for both their learning and that of others.