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Cooperative Learning: Encouraging Pro-Social Behavior - Essay Example

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Cooperative Learning: Encouraging Pro-Social Behavior Introduction Children learn from the environment they dwell in. The modern society emphasizes more and more on competition regardless of the field of life, age group or any other factor affecting it. People uphold a positive attitude towards competition and believe it to be a positive force in terms of improving performances…
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Download file to see previous pages The aggression, antisocial behavior and competition are contrasted with the concept of prosocial behavior. This concept focuses on the positivity and effectiveness of working in collaboration, maintaining a positive level of interdependence, stronger social relationships and better interacting opportunities for children. Prosocial behavior is accustomed with harmony, peace, generosity and cooperation (Lovat et al., 2010). Children with prosocial behavior are selfless and focus on others’ needs and feelings. People exercising or adopting prosocial behavior are considered as altruists who have stronger commitment towards others and others’ wellbeing. If children are directed towards attaining a prosocial behavior, there is a possibility that aggression might be controlled in the adulthood of those children. In order to eliminate the anti-social behavior, cooperative learning was developed with an aim to promote prosocial behaviors among the children, which may further extend its roots to their adult life. Importance of Cooperative Learning in Developing Prosocial Behavior Millis & Rehem (2010) reveal that cooperative learning is a mechanism which is structured in order to work in groups carefully constructed leading to insightful learning, improving the critical thinking abilities and moving the thinking of students’ from one perspective to the other. This type of learning has certain distinguishing factors working behind this model which differ it from collaborative learning. The two factors are positive interdependence and individual accountability (Millis & Rehem 2010). This type of learning does not provide a chance to forego any accountability on individual basis but rather requires the teachers to evaluate every individual’s performance using strategies. It rejects taking an ignorant approach and marking all students as per the group’s collaborative results. On the other hand, positive interdependence is the reliance of each student in the group on the work of others usually due to the nature and scope of the tasks assigned to them. This way, students tend to work with each other and cooperate which further enhances their socialization, collaboration and interaction (Gillies & Ashman, 2003). Cooperative learning is an important technique to improve the prosocial behavior. It enables the students to engage in collaborative efforts to achieve certain goals. The level of communication in and interaction increases and they tend to have an emotional and sensitive attitude towards their peers (Dowling, 2000). In order to develop these feelings, collaborative learning provides a way to integration of children in different smaller groups. Wandberg & Rohwer (2009) conclude that students’ achievement level is higher in collaborative learning environment due to their interaction which leads to better performance in vocabulary, reading, language skills, mathematical results and other educational performances. The reason of improved language performance may be the regular interaction and higher level of communication which allows them to share their thoughts, language differences, diversity and differences in the use of vocabulary which is then shared within the group members. Their collaboration leads them to work out mathematical and other complex questions together combining the knowledge which is shared across the ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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