Groups in teaching
James Atherton

13 February 2014, Tresham College

“Insanity in individuals is something rare—but in
gr...
www.learningandteaching.info/teaching/usingthegroup.htm
The material in this
presentation (and more)
is available on this site:
(hyperlinks are inactive)

www.learningandteaching...
Approaches to Groups


“Reading” groups




Understanding what is going on from a
descriptive and analytic perspective
...
Approaches to Groups


“Reading” groups




Understanding what is going on from a
descriptive and analytic perspective
...
Approaches to Groups


“Reading” groups




Understanding what is going on from a
descriptive and analytic perspective
...
The Group Dimension




Groups have

emergent
properties, i.e. they are
more than the sum of
their parts








...
The Group Dimension




Groups have

emergent
properties, i.e. they are
more than the sum of
their parts
As teachers, we...
But you can’t legislate
them out of existence.
And managed properly
they can really
contribute to the
process of learning
...
Formal and Informal Groups
Formal

Task
System
Role
Individual
Informal
Formal and Informal Groups
Formal

Task
System
Role
Individual
For a fuller discussion, see:
www.learningandteaching.info/...
Task and Maintenance
Task

Individual

Group
Task and Maintenance
This is the basic
model, to which we
returned several times.

Task

Individual

Group
Task and Maintenance
This is the basic
model, to which we
returned several times.

Task

Individual

Group

All three comp...
Group Size








2: Limited group
process
3: Potential for 2
against 1
4: 3 against 1 and
even splits
5: clear and m...
More on this at:
www.learningandteaching.info/teaching/group_size.ht
m









2: Limited group
process
3: Potential ...
Group Development





Forming
Storming
Norming
Performing

Forming

Storming

Performing

Norming
Group Development





Forming
Storming
Norming
Performing

More detailed discussion and source links:
www.learningand...
Basic Assumption Behaviour 1


Two levels:





Work-group
Basic Assumption

In ba behaviour: Group acts as if it had
...
Basic Assumption Behaviour 2





ba Dependence
ba Fight/Flight
ba Pairing (Expectancy)

We only discussed
ba dependen...
Basic Assumption Dependence




Groups acts as if it
had made the
assumption that it is
here to depend on
someone.
May b...
(This is an added slide)








In discussion the “additional” basic assumptions came up—indeed they were
mentioned b...
Roles in Groups


Function of





Formality
Task
Pressure
Individual valency

This issue is taken up further at:
www...
Management Teams





Company worker
Chairman
Shaper
Plant






Resource Investigator
Monitor-evaluator
Team-work...
Classes in School










swot
rebel
joker
teacher's pet
dunce
scapegoat
chatterbox
bully
victim



…and the t...
Major dimensions of
Roles in groups
Dominance

Included/
Committed

Excluded/
Uncommitted

Submission

Here for the sake o...
What to do about them






Roles become a problem mainly when a
member is locked into one
Members who have a high vale...
Proportion of time
speaking

Participation:

vocal and silent members

40%
35%
30%
25%
20%
15%
10%
5%
0%
1

2

3

4

5

6
...
Working with Groups


“Interaction breeds sentiment”

(Homans)

Task and Maintenance both need
attention
 Behaviour is i...
www.learningandteaching.info/teaching/usingthegroup.htm
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Groups 10 for web

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Transcript of "Groups 10 for web"

  1. 1. Groups in teaching James Atherton 13 February 2014, Tresham College “Insanity in individuals is something rare—but in groups, parties, nations and epochs, it is the rule.” Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900) Beyond Good and Evil: 156 (1886)
  2. 2. www.learningandteaching.info/teaching/usingthegroup.htm
  3. 3. The material in this presentation (and more) is available on this site: (hyperlinks are inactive) www.learningandteaching.info/teaching/usingthegroup.htm
  4. 4. Approaches to Groups  “Reading” groups   Understanding what is going on from a descriptive and analytic perspective Leading groups  Application of above and approaches to structuring groups to serve a particular task
  5. 5. Approaches to Groups  “Reading” groups   Understanding what is going on from a descriptive and analytic perspective Leading groups  Application of above and approaches to structuring groups to serve a particular task Of course teachers are primarily interested in how to lead and manage groups (classes), but being able to read them certainly helps. You almost certainly know a lot of this already, but you can use it more effectively when you have a language to discuss it.
  6. 6. Approaches to Groups  “Reading” groups   Understanding what is going on from a descriptive and analytic perspective Leading groups  Application of above and approaches to structuring groups to serve a particular task As you ably demonstrated by the kind of comments you were making later on in the session Of course teachers are primarily interested in how to lead and manage groups (classes), but being able to read them certainly helps. You almost certainly know a lot of this already, but you can use it more effectively when you have a language to discuss it.
  7. 7. The Group Dimension   Groups have emergent properties, i.e. they are more than the sum of their parts          norms culture cohesiveness trust inclusion/exclusion pressure roles leadership/authority hidden agendas career
  8. 8. The Group Dimension   Groups have emergent properties, i.e. they are more than the sum of their parts As teachers, we often like to pretend that these aspects don’t exist; that they are simply hindrances to the real tasks of teaching and learning          norms culture cohesiveness trust inclusion/exclusion pressure roles leadership/authority hidden agendas career
  9. 9. But you can’t legislate them out of existence. And managed properly they can really contribute to the process of learning  The Group Dimension Groups have emergent properties, i.e. they are more than the sum of their parts As teachers, we often like to pretend that these aspects don’t exist; that they are simply hindrances to the real tasks of teaching and learning           norms culture cohesiveness trust inclusion/exclusion pressure roles leadership/authority hidden agendas career
  10. 10. Formal and Informal Groups Formal Task System Role Individual Informal
  11. 11. Formal and Informal Groups Formal Task System Role Individual For a fuller discussion, see: www.learningandteaching.info/teaching/group_cultures. htm Informal
  12. 12. Task and Maintenance Task Individual Group
  13. 13. Task and Maintenance This is the basic model, to which we returned several times. Task Individual Group
  14. 14. Task and Maintenance This is the basic model, to which we returned several times. Task Individual Group All three components require attention from the leader (teacher)— and they may well pull in different directions
  15. 15. Group Size     2: Limited group process 3: Potential for 2 against 1 4: 3 against 1 and even splits 5: clear and marginal majorities    6–12: developing complexity: individualism preserved. 12-20: tendency to operate on sub-groups 20+: sub-group process inevitable
  16. 16. More on this at: www.learningandteaching.info/teaching/group_size.ht m     2: Limited group process 3: Potential for 2 against 1 4: 3 against 1 and even splits 5: clear and marginal majorities    Group Size 6–12: developing complexity: individualism preserved. 12-20: tendency to operate on sub-groups 20+: sub-group process inevitable
  17. 17. Group Development     Forming Storming Norming Performing Forming Storming Performing Norming
  18. 18. Group Development     Forming Storming Norming Performing More detailed discussion and source links: www.learningandteaching.info /teaching/group_development.htm Forming Storming Performing Norming
  19. 19. Basic Assumption Behaviour 1  Two levels:    Work-group Basic Assumption In ba behaviour: Group acts as if it had made the assumption that it is here to... In the early ‘60s, psychoanalyst W R Bion proposed a different model, outlined at www.learningandteaching.info/teaching/group_cultures.htm (page down to “Bion”) and linked material.
  20. 20. Basic Assumption Behaviour 2     ba Dependence ba Fight/Flight ba Pairing (Expectancy) We only discussed ba dependence, as most relevant to teaching, so other slides have been edited out. correspond to the 4 “F”s of organisms’ basic responses to external objects     Feed Fight Flee Mate
  21. 21. Basic Assumption Dependence   Groups acts as if it had made the assumption that it is here to depend on someone. May be very seductive for leader (but doesn’t last)
  22. 22. (This is an added slide)     In discussion the “additional” basic assumptions came up—indeed they were mentioned by group members before me. Great stuff. They are ba OneNess, postulated by Pierre Turquet in 1974. That is where the group as a whole is determined to deny differences and individuality. I admit that the discussion concentrated rather too much on the imposition of uniformity, rather than a desire arising out of the emotional needs of the participants, and I did not correct that drift as actively as I should have done. And ba MeNess is the polar opposite (from Gordon Lawrence et al. in 1996). In our discussion it arose from one of you identifying that in a class of people with severe learning disabilities, some or all may lack the capacity to understand what a group is. They are looked at in a little more detail at www.learningandteaching.info/teaching/groups_other_bas.htm (scroll down); an authoritative account can be found at; www.acsa.net.au/articles/thefifthbasicassumption.pdf
  23. 23. Roles in Groups  Function of     Formality Task Pressure Individual valency This issue is taken up further at: www.learningandteaching.info/ teaching/roles_in_groups.htm
  24. 24. Management Teams     Company worker Chairman Shaper Plant     Resource Investigator Monitor-evaluator Team-worker Completer-finisher According to Belbin (2004); the formula is disputed as well as followed even its own field. But teaching and learning is clearly beyond its range of convenience and applicability
  25. 25. Classes in School          swot rebel joker teacher's pet dunce scapegoat chatterbox bully victim  …and the teacher
  26. 26. Major dimensions of Roles in groups Dominance Included/ Committed Excluded/ Uncommitted Submission Here for the sake of completeness… there was no time to examine implications for classes.
  27. 27. What to do about them    Roles become a problem mainly when a member is locked into one Members who have a high valency for a role regardless of group can be tackled individually But if the role is a function of group needs, work with the whole group to give the problem member space to change
  28. 28. Proportion of time speaking Participation: vocal and silent members 40% 35% 30% 25% 20% 15% 10% 5% 0% 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Group members (in order of contribution) We didn’t get a chance to discuss this research, although I promised we would, but there is more at: www.learningandteaching.info/teaching/ participation_levels.htm
  29. 29. Working with Groups  “Interaction breeds sentiment” (Homans) Task and Maintenance both need attention  Behaviour is information at the maintenance level  especially modelling  and representation 
  30. 30. www.learningandteaching.info/teaching/usingthegroup.htm
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