Friday, February 12, 2016

A Piece of the Learning Puzzle

. . . Later that day I read a recent article in College Teaching by Raymond Benton, Jr., a business professor at Loyola University Chicago. He writes about a teaching technique, developed in the 1970s by Elliot Aronson, called the “jigsaw classroom.” You may have heard of it but I hadn’t. It involves dividing students into small groups and asking each member of each group to learn about a different area or aspect of the day’s subject. For example, you could break up a reading into five sections, divide your class into groups of five, and then have each member of each group tackle one of the five sections. After giving the students time to work on their individual sections, you then form cross-sectional groups — uniting all the students assigned to section No. 1, all the students assigned to section No. 2. After those groups meet, students then return to their original groups and present their sections to each other, discussing the reading as a whole.

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