ERIC Number: ED376972
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1994-Apr
Organization of Counting in Joint Counting Tasks and the Emergence of Cooperation in Pairs of Kindergarten Students.
Wiegel, Heide G.
This study investigated manifestations of collaborative work with pairs of kindergarten children during counting tasks designed to promote early number development. The data were collected by means of classroom observations, interviews with individual students, and teaching sessions with pairs of students. Ten students were paired to be compatible with respect to their counting stage. During the teaching sessions and the interviews, the students encountered various counting tasks and games incorporating counting. As the pairs participated in the teaching sessions, their actions were documented on video- and audiotape. Analyses indicated that the students generated four strategies to organize their counting: (1) counting side by side; (2) counting at the same time; (3) taking turns; and (4) working cooperatively. Whereas students counted independently with the strategies of counting side by side or at the same time, they coordinated their actions in order to decide who would start and who would wait in taking turns. The waiting partner engaged in several activities such as watching, watching and joining, solving the partner's task, supporting, helping, commenting, correcting, and completing the partner's task. There were two favorable conditions for the initiation of a cooperative counting episode: (1) counting tasks with more than 10 items that the students could not solve alone; and (2) the teacher's explicit instruction to work as a team. Cooperative strategies were sharing resources, double counting, delegating tasks, and counting alternately. Results of the study suggest that working in pairs can be valuable for kindergarten students in terms of enhancing the students' cognitive development and promoting sophisticated ways of social interaction. (Contains 39 references.) (WP)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (New Orleans, LA, April 4-8, 1994). Paper is based partly on a doctoral study.