Grouping Practices

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    • 00:08

      AARON FERGUSON: There's no right way to pair kids,but there's only you testing it out and saying, did this matchwork?Sometimes you pair a high with a low, and it works perfectly.Sometimes it does not at all.It kind of depends on the high student.If they want to be a nurturing or if they wantto take the role of a teacher--if they do, it works perfect, especially if the low student

    • 00:30

      AARON FERGUSON [continued]: wants to learn from their peer.You kind of have to match that.Sometimes a low-low or sometimes a high-high works.But as long as you're keeping a test-minded approach to it,where you try it out, does it work, does it not,and finding those optimal combinations.

    • 00:46

      IAN MCFADYEN: Mostly for grouping I do, like,jigsaw kind of work, which is where students are allresponsible for a certain portionand then they get back together and everybodyhas covered something.So if I have, like, a big piece of readingthat I think it's going to be too much for all the studentsto handle, then I'll put them in smaller groups.

    • 01:09

      IAN MCFADYEN [continued]: So I'll, as an example, you're a one, you're a two,you're a three, you're a four.All the ones there, all the twos there,all the threes there, all the fours there.Fours, you have this section.Threes, you have this section.Twos, ones.And then, when they get back together,there's someone from group one, group two, group three,and group four all together.So then they've covered the whole section

    • 01:31

      IAN MCFADYEN [continued]: by jigsaw and like that.So I use that.Grouping or pairing, something that I've learned--and it was in research somewhere,I can't quote it, where it was from--but it's pretty powerful.I think a lot of times--I've seen it a lot, where teachers will pair people

    • 01:52

      IAN MCFADYEN [continued]: like basketball brackets, where you take seed one and seed 16,and you put them together, and thinkthat that's going to work.That's not as effective as putting seed one and twotogether, and seed three and four together,and seed five and six together.Actually, the closer they are in academic ability,the better they're going to perform as a group

    • 02:13

      IAN MCFADYEN [continued]: because if they're too far apart, they're too far apart.They don't have the skills that are even close to each other,so they're not really going to be able to work together.They're going to be sitting by each otherand that's not effective.So having students that are closer in abilityis much more important than puttingthe best with the lowest.

    • 02:35

      IAN MCFADYEN [continued]: That's not effective at all.

Grouping Practices

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Abstract

Aaron Ferguson and Ian McFadyen explain how they choose student groups.

Grouping Practices

Aaron Ferguson and Ian McFadyen explain how they choose student groups.

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