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Benefits of Small Group Learning

Updated: Mar 22, 2023

Group work can be an effective approach to encourage active learning, motivate pupils, and develop teamwork, communication, critical thinking, problem-solving, and decision-making skills. School dry-wipe, magnetic whiteboards, such as our A2 Wedge Dry-Wipe Whiteboards are double-sided and perfectly suited to group work.

Learning collaboratively (or cooperatively) means pupils work together on activities or tasks in a small enough group to ensure everyone participates. In the group, students may work on separate tasks for a common outcome, or they may work together on a shared task.

Small group learning in a collaborative environment has the following benefits:

  • Improved learning outcomes & academic achievement

  • Development of interpersonal skills

  • Pupils show active participation

  • More opportunities for feedback

  • Builds confidence and self-esteem

  • Pupils can experience personalized learning

  • Learn conflict resolution & negotiation skills

  • Pupils experience more satisfaction

  • Diversity is better understood

Learning in small groups is a solution to the problem of crowded classrooms where students are less engaged and more distracted. Small group learning has many other benefits when implemented in a collaborative environment. Through this method, students learn more than just academic concepts.

Here are some of the important benefits:

Improved learning outcomes & academic achievement

Students learn and grasp academic concepts more effectively through small group learning in a collaborative environment. Through critical discussion and examination of topics and theories, they also retain information for a longer period. As a result, learning outcomes are improved and students perform better academically.

Development of interpersonal skills

By learning in small groups, students can learn how to communicate clearly, listen actively, show empathy, and give positive feedback.

Pupils show active participation

In small groups, student engagement and participation are much higher than in large groups. Active participation leads to active learning. Furthermore, students take more responsibility and ownership of the tasks through their participation in the planning and coordination process.

Teacher enaging pupils in primary school class through small group learning using an A3 portable blue Wedge white boaard
Small group learning using a Blue A3 Wedge Whiteboard.

More opportunities for feedback

The development of a student's skills depends on feedback. Feedback helps students understand if they are doing things correctly. They also know where they need to improve. Small groups are more likely to provide constructive and positive feedback than large groups.

Builds confidence and self-esteem

The benefits of small-group learning include building self-confidence and self-esteem. As students actively participate in the group's work, they can utilize their strengths and abilities to accomplish a useful goal and see their progress. Their self-confidence increases, as a result, making it easier for them to tackle difficult challenges.

Pupils can experience personalized learning

Traditional classrooms cannot provide personalized learning because of the size of the class. It has been shown that individualized learning can lead to better information retention and better practical application of knowledge.

Learn conflict resolution & negotiation skills

Conflicts and misunderstandings are inevitable when working with others. To learn conflict-resolution skills and behaviors, students must experience these conflicts and negotiate their way around them. By reducing the size of the group, small-group learning increases the need for conflict resolution, resulting in better learning outcomes.

Pupils experience more satisfaction

In a small group setting, students are more satisfied with the learning process. This is not only because of the closeness of the group but also because they put more effort into it. By investing time and effort in learning concepts together, students have a greater sense of responsibility, resulting in greater satisfaction as their learning goals are achieved.

Diversity is better understood

In small groups, students can discuss their personal lives and cultural backgrounds in a safe environment. Through this, students can better understand diversity and become more sensitive to different ethnicities and religions. As a result, stereotypes are shattered, and bias is eliminated.

By introducing group work into your classroom, you create opportunities for collaborative learning and the development of cooperative learning skills. By working in small groups, pupils can learn from and support each other, and provides the opportunity for you as a teacher, to cater for individual differences. By structuring groups appropriately, you can allocate tasks in accordance with the educational needs of individual pupils.


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