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The effects of Cooperative learning on third-grade students math test scores

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### The effects of Cooperative learning on third-grade students math test scores

Beramiesha ThompsonEd. 702.22 – Action Research Project -Final

Fall 2009

TABLE OF CONTENTS

- Introduction
- Statement of Problem
- Literature Review
- Pros
- Theorists
- Cons
- Hypothesis
- Methods
- Participants (N)
- Instruments

Introduction

- References
- Appendices

Statement of the Problem

- Students have difficulty retaining mathematical concepts taught in the classroom, which negatively affects their mathematics achievement.
- Mathematics is instructed through the use of textbooks which are teacher-led.
- Mathematics does not consistently use cooperative learning grouping and interactions between the students to promote retention and achievement.
- Positive correlation between the use of cooperative learning grouping in mathematics instruction, and it’s enhancement of students learning experience and their ability to excel in mathematics.

What is cooperative learning?

- Cooperative learning is the small grouping of students who work together on structured and clear objectives, tasks, or activities in the classroom. Johnson and Johnson (1999)
- Cooperative learning promotes accountability for the student’s individual work (input) in the group, promotes team work (interaction and engagement), and effective social skills.
- Impacts students cognitive and affective goals in math and science. Abu, Pendidikan, Pendididkan (1997)
- Five elements of cooperation: positive interdependence, individual accountability, face to face promotive interaction, social skills, and group processing in math. Gilles (2002); Zakaris, & Iksan (2006)
- Promotes content understanding, increased achievement, improved self-esteem, and higher motivation to remain on task. Slavin (1981)- developed Student Teams Achievement Division method (STAD).

Cooperative and Collaborative Learning Explanation, www.thirteen.org/edonline/concept2class/coopcollab/index.html

Literature reviewCooperative Learning Grouping -PROS

- Student/teacher relationship
- Effective and positive teacher and student engagement impacts retention and achievement in math. (Fredricks, Blumenfeld, & Paris 2004; Chiu, 2004)
- Teachers demonstration of respect for students and positive social relations with students improves students achievement. (Wade, 1995)
- Teacher’s demonstration of empathy impacts their relationships with students and their motivation. (Murdock & Miller , 2003)

Literature Review cooperative learning grouping - Pros

- Intrinsic versus extrinsic motivation
- Classroom structure influences student goal orientation. (Self- Brown & Matthews, 2003)
- Positive grouping enhances intrinsic motivation. (Battistich, Solomon, & Delucchi,1993)
- Intangible and tangible rewards
- Students respond well to cooperative learning grouping and tangible rewards. (Haywood, Kuespert, Madecky, & Nor, 2008)
- Social approval and reinforcement impact students achievement and behavior. (Polirstok & Gottlieb, 2006)
- Quality of individual-based reinforcement. (Wilson-Saddler,1997)

Literature Review cooperative learning grouping - PROS

- Student-centered teaching
- Peer grouping impacts student cognitive and motivation skills in math. (Nichols & White, 2001; Mueller & Fleming, 2001)
- Learning-oriented classroom impacts student learning. (Marshall, 1987)
- Interactive instruction
- Social environmental factors impact student motivation and engagement. (Ryan & Patrick, 2001)
- Positively affects student attitude and achievement in math. (Vaughn, 2002)
- Cooperative learning and mastery learning strategies for effective student learning. (Guskey, 1990)

Literature Reviewtheorist

Behavioral Motivation Theory

- B.F. Skinner (1998) - extrinsic and intrinsic motivation

(Haywood et.al , 2008; Wilson-Saddler, 1997)

Social-Cognitive

Learning Theory

- Albert Bandura (1977) –self-efficacy
- Jean Piaget (1980) – cognitive development

(Marshall, 1987; Ryan & Patrick, 2001)

LITERATURE REVIEW Theorists

Theory of Growth Motivation

- Abraham Maslow (1943) – self-actualization

(Murdock & Miller, 2003; Corno & Mandinach , 1983)

Biehler; & Snowman (1997) Psychology Applied to Teaching. Houghton-Mifflin 8th Edition. Chapter 11, 12

Achievement-Motivation Theory

John Atkinson (1960’s) – innate vs. experience

(Self-Brown et.al , 2003)

Literature Review cooperative learning grouping - cons

- Mixing students makes grouping problematic.
- Few efficient and objective measuring tools. (Marshall, 1987)
- Difficult to identify effective strategies that meet all students needs. (Taylor & Adelman,1999)
- Bureaucracy i.e.. Curriculum, school personnel, administrators

Motivation and Classroom Learning

www.edb.utexas.edu/borich/pdfdocs/chapter7.pdf

Literature Review cooperative learning grouping - cons

- Fails to promote higher leveling thinking. (Randall, 1999)
- Smaller vs. larger grouping size. (Slavin,1981)
- Prior research on student’s motivation and academic achievement has failed to examine math as a social construct. (Middleton & Spanias, 1999)
- Peer grouping and cooperative learning has no affect on student achievement. (Gabrielle & Montecinos, 2001)

Hypothesis

HR:

Implementing cooperative learning in the classroom over a 6 week period, will improve the math tests scores of 25 urban-area third-grade students from PS-X.

MethodsInstruments

- Consents
- Student/Parent
- Surveys(Qualitative Data - Likert scale)
- Students
- Teacher
- Assessment Tools (Quantitative Data)
- Pre-test math exams scores
- Post-test math exams scores
- Observations/Interviews
- Teacher
- Students

Methodsparticipants

- The participants (N) are 25 third-grade students from one general education classroom in PS-X. There are 14 boys and 11 girls in the classroom.
- PS-X is located in an urban area.
- The students are from diverse racial, ethnic, and cultural backgrounds (Chinese, Latin-American, African-American, Caucasian).

references

Self-Brown, S., & Matthews, S. (2003). Effects of classroom structure on student achievement goal orientation. The Journal for Educational Research, 97 (2). Retrieved October 5, 2009, from www.jstor.org.

Marshall, H. (1987). Motivational strategies of three fifth-grade teachers. The Elementary School Journal, 88 (2), 134-150. Retrieved October 5, 2009, from www.jstor.org.

Ryan, A., & Patrick, H. (2001). The classroom social environment and changes in adolescent’s motivation and engagement during middle school. American Educational Research Journal, 38 (2),437-460. Retrieved October 5, 2009, from www.jstor.org

Murdock, T., & Miller, A. (2003). Teachers as sources of middle school students motivational identity: Variable-centered and person-centered analytic approaches. The Elementary School Journal, 103 (4), 383-399. Retrieved October 5, 2009, from the www.jstor.org.

Wade, R. (1995). Encouraging student initiative in a fourth-grade classroom. TheElementary School Journal, 95, (4), 339-354. Retrieved October 5, 2009, from www.jstor.org .

Haywood, J., Kuespert, S., Madecky, D., Nor, A. (2008). Increasing elementary and high school student motivation through the use of extrinsic and intrinsic rewards. Retrieved September 14, 2009, from www.eric.edu.

Wilson-Saddler, D. (1997). Using effective praise to produce positive results in the classroom. Teaching and Change, Vol. 4(4),338-357. Retrieved September 14, 2009, from www.eric.edu

Polirstok, S., & Gottlieb, J. (2006). The impact of positive behavior intervention training for teachers on referrals rates for misbehavior, special education evaluation, and student reading achievement in the elementary grades. International Journal of Behavioral Consultation and Therapy, 2 (3), 354-361. Retrieved September 13, 2009, from www.eric.edu.

REFERENCES

Corno, L. & Mandinach, E.B. (1983). Using existing classroom data to explore relationships in a theoretical model of academic motivation. Journal of Educational Research, 77 (1),33-42. Retrieved September 29, 2009, from www.eric.edu.

Sideridis, G., Mouzaki, A., Simos, P., Protopapas, A. (2006). Classification of students with reading comprehension difficulties: The role of motivation, affect, and psychopathology. Learning Disability Quarterly, 29 (3),159-80. Retrieved September 29, 2009, from http://www.jstor.org.

Taylor, L.; & Adelman, H. (1999). Personalizing classroom instruction to account for motivational and developmental differences. Reading and Writing Quarterly, 15, 255-276. Retrieved October 1, 2009 from www.jstor.org.

Mueller, A. & Fleming, T. (2001). Cooperative learning: Listening to how children work at school. The Journal of Educational Research, 94 (5). Retrieved October 17, 2009, from www.eric.ed.gov

Abu, R., Pendidikan, J., Pendidikan, F.P. (1997). The effects of cooperative learning methods on achievement, retention, and attitudes of home economics students in North Carolina. Journal of Vocational and Technical Education, 13 (2). Retrieved October 19, 2009, from http://www.scholar.lib.vt.edu.

Zakaria, E., & Iksan, Z. (2006). Promoting cooperative learning in science and mathematics education: A Malaysian perspective. Eurasia Journal of Mathematics, Science, & Technology Education, 3(1). Retrieved October 19, 2009, from www.jstor.org

Middleton, J., & Spanias, P. (1999). Motivation for achievement in mathematics: Findings, generalizations and criticisms of the research. Journal for Research in Mathematics Education, 30 (1), 65-88. Retrieved October 19, 2009, from www.jstor.org

Johnson, D., & Johnson, R. (1999). Making cooperative learning work. Theory into Practice, 38 (2), 67-73. Retrieved November 12, 2009 from www.jstor.org.

REFERENCES

Chiu, M.M. (2004). Adapting teacher interventions to student needs during cooperative learning: How to improve student problem-solving and time on-task. American Educational Research Journal, 41 (2), 365-399. Retrieved October 19, 2009, from www.jstor.org

Gabrielle, A.J., & Montecinos, C. (2001). Collaborating with a skilled peer: The influence of achievement goals and perceptions of partners' competence on the participation and learning of low-achieving students . The Journal of Experimental Education, 69 (2), 152-178. Retrieved October 29, 2009, from www.jstor.org.

Gilles, R. 2002. The residual effects of cooperative-learning experiences: A two-year follow up. The Journal of Educational Research, 96 (1), 15-20. Retrieved October 29, 2009, from www.jstor.org.

Nichols, J., & White, J. (2001). Impact of peer networks on achievement of high school algebra students. The Journal of Educational Research, 94 (5) 267-273. Retrieved October 29, 2009, from www.jstor.org.

Guskey, T. (1990). Cooperative mastery learning strategies. The Elementary School Journal, 91 (1), 33-42. Retrieved October 29, 2009, from www.jstor.org.

Battistich, V. Solomon, D., Delucchi, K. (1993). Interaction processes and student outcomes in cooperative learning groups. The Elementary School Journal, 94 (1), 19-32. Retrieved November 5, 2009 from www.jstor.org.

Fredricks, J., Blumenfeld, P., Paris, A. (2004). School engagement: Potential of the concept, state of the evidence. Review of Educational Research, 74 (1), 59-109. Retrieved November 12, 2009 from www.jstor.org.

Vaughn, W. (2002). Effects of cooperative learning on achievement and attitude among students of color. The Journal of Educational Research, 95 (6), 359-364. Retrieved November 12, 2009 from www.jstor.org.

Slavin, R. (1980). Cooperative learning. Review of Educational Research, 50 (2), 315-342. Retrieved October 5, 2009 from www.jstor.org.

Appendix a:parental consent

Dear Parent/ Guardian,I am a graduate level student pursuing my master’s degree in Childhood Education (1-6) at Brooklyn College and I am currently working on an action research project. I am requesting your permission for your child in his/her class to participate in the project over the next 6 weeks. The focus of my action research project will be examining the effects of cooperative learning grouping in the classroom on students’ math achievement. During the course of six weeks, I will be asking your child to participate in questionnaires, surveys, interviews, and math tests.

Please sign the consent below for your child to or not to participate in the project in their classroom. Please return the completed form to the student’s teacher. Please note that your child’s identity and school will remain confidential. Thank you in advance for your cooperation and participation in the project.

Sincerely, Beramiesha Thompson------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------I am granting for my child to participate in the action research study. I am aware that my child’s identity will remain confidential.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------I am not allowing my child to participate in the action research study. I am aware that my child’s identity will remain confidential.-----------------------------------------------Date

Appendix b:school consent

Dear School Administrator: I am a graduate level student at Brooklyn College, pursuing a master’s degree in Childhood Education (grade 1-6). I am currently working on an action research project focusing on the effects of cooperative learning grouping on students’ math achievement. I am requesting your permission to conduct my study in a 3rd grade classroom at your school over 6-8 weeks.

During the course of the 6-8 weeks, I will be asking the class to participate in questionnaires, demographic surveys, interviews, and math exams. Please note that all names will remain confidential and all data collected will be used solely for the purpose of this study. Thank you for your cooperation and participation. Sincerely, Beramiesha Thompson

Appendix c:student survey

Gender: ____ Female ____ Male

Ethnicity: ____ African-American ___ Asian-American ___ Hispanic

___ Caucasian ___ Other (specify) _________________

Favorite Subject: ________________________________________________________

Use the following criteria below to answer the following questions. Please circle your responses.

1 – never 2 – rarely 3 – sometimes 4 – usually 5 – always

I am happy about math instruction? 1 2 3 4 5

I work better alone on math class work. 1 2 3 4 5

I have difficulty learning math concepts while working alone? 1 2 3 4 5

I work better within a group on class work. 1 2 3 4 5

I like working in groups. 1 2 3 4 5

I have difficulty learning math concepts

while working with one or more classmates 1 2 3 4 5

I am able to ask fellow classmates for help on

math concepts I am unfamiliar with? 1 2 3 4 5

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Rate your grades right now/today in math:

Excellent A++ / 100-95

Very good A+/94-90

Good B+, A/89-85

Satisfactory B/84-80

Marginal C/79-75

Unsatisfactory D/ 74-70

Failing F/ Below 70

Overall rating on the following scale: ________________________ (Insert one of the given words.)

Appendix d:student survey

Gender: ____ Female ____ Male

Ethnicity: ____ African-American ___ Asian-American ___ Hispanic

___ Caucasian ___ Other (specify) _________________

Favorite Subject: ________________________________________________________

Use the following criteria below to answer the following questions. Please circle your responses.

1 – never 2 – rarely 3 – sometimes 4 – usually 5 – always

I am happy about math instruction? 1 2 3 4 5

work better alone on math class work. 1 2 3 4 5

I have difficulty learning math concepts while working alone? 1 2 3 4 5

I work better within a group on class work. 1 2 3 4 5

I like working in groups. 1 2 3 4 5

I have difficulty learning math concepts

while working with one or more classmates 1 2 3 4 5

I am able to ask fellow classmates for help on

math concepts I am unfamiliar with? 1 2 3 4 5

I cooperated with the group effort? 1 2 3 4 5

My grades improved in math in the groups? 1 2 3 4 5

I was able to understand the math concepts better with 1 2 3 4 5

help from my group members?

I like to continue to work in groups during math? 1 2 3 4 5

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Rate your grades today in math:

Excellent A++ / 100-95 Very good A+/94-90

Good B+, A/89-85 Satisfactory B/84-80

Unsatisfactory D/ 74-70 Marginal C/79-75

Failing F/ Below 70

Overall rating on the following scale: ________________________ (Insert one of the given words.)

Appendix e:teacher survey

Use the following criteria below to answer the following questions. Please circle your responses.

1 – never 2 – rarely 3 – sometimes 4 – usually 5 – always

Do you use a textbook during math instruction? 1 2 3 4 5

Do you use cooperative learning in your math instruction? 1 2 3 4 5

Is cooperative grouping effective for math instruction? 1 2 3 4 5

Do students respond well to math concepts working in cooperative

learning groups. 1 2 3 4 5

Is teacher instruction easier using cooperative learning strategies. 1 2 3 4 5

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Rate the average grade in math for students’ in the class:

Excellent A++ / 100-95

Very good A+/94-90

Good B+, A/89-85

Satisfactory B/84-80

Marginal C/79-75

Unsatisfactory D/ 74-70

Failing F/ Below 70

Overall rating on the following scale: ________________________ (Insert one of the given words.)

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