Anonymous learners, collaborative groupwork and shared file
Most students have strong preconceptions concerning themselves as learners. This is why anonymous working is sometimes useful as a part of high school studies. I have worked ten years as a biology students and used fronter for six years. The following method has worked very well as a part of high school human biology course.
The common size of human biology study group is about 30 students. Most of students know each others. This is why some students do not show all potential they have because they believe that other students are better than them. During the course I have created 8 - 10 subgroups. The task of every subgroups is to make short introduction concerning their specific topic decided by teacher. This pedagogical exercise has three parts: 1) I have created closed subfolders in Fronter. Group members only have an access to these subfolders. I have opened an anonymous discussion and given the topic. The first task of students is to discuss and decide how they carry out their specific introduction. The only requirement is that they have to use shared file. 2) When students have decided how they work they start to work with the topic. All students make a chapter/chapters based on their common decision. When they are ready they return the chapter by using shared file. (Exercise becomes non-anonymous). When all members have returned their chapter they can modify the whole work only once (evaluating others work by giving comments, NOT modifying chapters). 3) When work is finished all subgroups copy their work in the common, public folder which is available to all students.
Why anonymous working works? All students have to take responsibility. They can not go"behind others back" because they do not know other members of the groups. All students have to take responsibility and all students have to study! This methods has been a successfull one when evaluating course average grades with and without this exercise.
About the author
What inspires you?
Dedicated students, teaching.
Tikkurilan lukio, Vantaa, Finland