Thursday, April 1, 2010

Social Learning

Social learning is innate to a classroom setting where cooperative learning is taught. It is my belief that cooperative learning, especially through technology is an incredible way to instill knowledge in a long-term, meaningful way because “students attempt to imitate real-life learning” (Palmer, Peters & Streetman, 2003). Of course, it should be understood that proper planning and monitoring is a must for social learning to actually happen within a cooperative classroom.

Using technology within the scope of social learning adapts students to the high paced, ultimately cooperative setting they will live through daily at work in their future. I have included online quizzes for students to complete as a group where students are given space to show work, collaborate, and give proper reasoning that might not happen individually as it is a cumbersome task for just one. This allows for students to experience “positive interdependence” (Pitler et. al, 2007)

I also like to have students complete summative assessments as groups because it is known that individuals retain different pieces of lecture as it pertains to them. Having students complete a glog, a poster on publisher, or an online cartoon allows students to remind each other of different aspects of the lesson, to piece the information together for each other in a meaningful way.
All of these methods are more appealing to students because of its social aspect. This is a main priority for students especially in middle school, thus social learning is also a motivational tool.

Palmer, G., Peters, R., & Streetman, R. (2003). Cooperative learning. In M. Orey (Ed.), Emerging perspectives on learning, teaching, and technology. Retrieved 3/30/2010, from

Pitler, H., Hubbell, E., Kuhn, M., & Malenoski, K. (2007). Using technology with classroom instruction that works. Alexandria, VA: ASCD


  1. My students are very familiar with Glogster and love using it to showcase what they have learned. In addition, the comic strips they create online are also a great tool. I had my students create comic strips to review test taking skills for our state assessments. It was a great way for them to teach others what they had learned in a new an exciting way.

  2. Ms. Bucci, I love the idea of using the cartoon to explain test taking strategies! I may have to use this one in the future! Its always a pleasure to get hints from fellow teachers! Thank you!