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Peer Learning Groups

Kevin Ruiz is a senior at Cleveland STEM High School and a marketing intern at Floop.  

The success of peer learning groups

Having your students build relationships and teaching them how to interact with others is a great skill. In the real world we may be put with others to work on a certain project or we may just have to interact with others in general at work. So, making sure students are constantly learning and practicing these life skills is important. This summer I was involved in a program at Seattle University, it was a business program for students all over the country and even some international students, and mainly no one knew each other. We were all given the task of creating a business with real-life numbers and scenarios, but we would have to do it with a group of students we didn’t even know and all of it would be done through Zoom meetings. Along the way, we had a college counselor to help us with anything we needed and to help us be more communicative with one another. We were able to get through the week-long program and complete our business plan. As a student who has experienced it first hand, I know that learning groups can be successful in this virtual learning environment. 

How learning groups work in a remote setting

Peer learning groups can be very effective. Starting with the basics, teachers could easily assign 3 or 4 students to a group. Through the virtual learning platform, the learning group works together on an assignment. This keeps students engaged and it also allows them to continue building their teamwork skills. 

Another way this method can be used is still having students in a group of 3 or 4, but instead of working on an assignment, students have a study group that they meet with every week which the teacher could join to answer any question this particular group might have. This method benefits both students and teachers, as the teacher doesn't have to meet with every student individually, they have these groups that they can offer support to. This also helps students because they have many resources available to them and it gives them more encouragement to reach out for help and feedback on whatever they need.

I believe these are just two ways that can be used by teachers. More examples include: 

  • Project-based learning groups 
  • Assign task that can be worked on by multiple students
  • Assign students into groups and discuss topics during class 
  • Group quizzes
  • Study groups 
  • Peer feedback groups

Why is this important?

I feel that peer learning groups are important because students need to continue working on all their skills, and being isolated working on your own can cause students to develop the bad habit of relying on only themselves and not asking for help. Many students may struggle to get help and having them with people who they trust and continue to build relationships over these learning groups will give students get their peers' encouragement to reach out for help. I also think teachers may struggle to interact and connect with all of their students throughout virtual learning. Us students can help with this struggle by helping each other! And if everyone in the group agrees that something isn't working in the “classroom”, that brings a lot more attention to the teacher than just one student. 

Peer learning groups offer a lot of great things for both teachers and students: it gives everyone a chance to be heard and for problems to be solved in a time where that can get difficult. Floop allows students to work together even when working on different schedules. When not everyone is available to work together at the same time, using the Floop peer review tool, they can give quality feedback on each other's work. This gives students a solution when working in an asynchronous learning environment.  

Keeping students active and engaged with other students is a great skill to have them work on and with so many tools out there, this is still possible even online. We as students always love to hear other opinions to see how we can better ourselves in school and receiving feedback from someone who is going through the topics and is your age, is hopeful because you as a student know you are not alone in this and we're all here to help each other. Staying connected is important and easy with Floop.


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