“Every time I do pair or group work, I’m pleasantly surprised [by] what I'm hearing. I’m pleasantly surprised about the level of engagement.”
This teacher observed what we at ELSF know to be true of pair and group work in classrooms. When used effectively, pair and group work have the potential to significantly support the development of academic concepts, skills, and language, as well as increase student engagement. Research in the field details that “Conversations act as scaffolds for students developing [academic content-specific] language because they provide opportunities to simultaneously make meaning and communicate that meaning (Mercer & Howe, 2012; Zwiers, 2011). They also allow students to hear how other students express their understandings” (Zwiers et al., 2017).