Today’s world is made up of many different kinds of people. People have different skin colors, different hair styles, different religions, cultural differences, and even different learning abilities. Often, many children feel that they are excluded from certain groups because of these differences. Upon review of this exclusion, the education system decided to change the Ideas and regulations about the way children were to be educated. The best and most effective of these changes Is referred to as collaboration.
According to Friend and Burdock (201 2), collaboration is hen two or more people work together to share information, ideas, activities and decisions to accomplish the same goal. When focusing on a child’s education, it is necessary for teachers to be able to effectively collaborate with not only the students, but with other educators and parents as well. Not only will a child receive the most adequate education, but the teacher will also grow as an educator as well. In order to successfully reach the particular goal, all participates in the collaboration process must be well informed on the characteristics of effective collaboration.
Friend and Burdock (2012) suggest several characteristics that will help form effective and successful collaboration. The first essential characteristic of successful collaboration Is a voluntary willingness to work together. In order for collaboration to be effective, participation must be a committed decision by all the people Involved. The second characteristic is that there must be parity between those involved. It is imperative that all opinions matter and are equally considered throughout this process.
When teachers feel like their opinions matter they feel important and respected. The third characteristic necessary to successful collaboration is that the participants all focus on one common goal. The fourth characteristic is established through the shared responsibility of decision making. All decisions should be agreed upon by each participant, no person’s opinion outweighs the opinion of others. The fifth characteristic required to achieve a successful collaboration is that all parties share accountability for the outcome, regardless of whether they succeed or fall.
If collaboration Is effectively carried out, each participant will have been an equal artificial; therefore, each person Is equally accountable for the outcome. The sixth characteristic is that everyone must share materials, time, ideas, opinions, and other resources. The final characteristic of a successful collaboration is that those involved realize that the process is emergent to the education system. In order for collaboration to be effective, all guidelines set by the characteristics must be followed correctly.
In addition to the characteristics, there are also a few effective methods for carrying out a successful collaboration. Currently the most popular method among searchers is co-teaching. According to Friend and Burdock (2012), co-teaching is when two teachers educate, In some form, in a single classroom setting. There are six different approaches available when using the co-teaching method. The first method is one teach, one observe. In this method, one teacher educates the class while the other collects Information while observing.
The second method is station teaching, In which students are arranged In three different groups. In two groups, teachers instruct the students on an activity: in the third group, the students work without When using this method, the teachers divide the class in half and teach the same lesson but present it using different strategies. Alternative teaching is the fourth method, in which one teacher focuses on the majority of the class, while the other teaches a smaller group. Typically, the smaller group is designed to reiterate a lesson that the group may be struggling with.
The fifth method is teaming, in which the teachers educate together and are equally engaged in the lesson. The final method of co-teaching is one teach, one assist; in this method, one teacher directs the lesson hill the other focuses on helping the students or assisting the directing teacher. Not only does co-teaching meet the educational needs of students, it also gives teachers the opportunity to work alongside a peer. Teachers that have this willingness to work together can give their students the best academic opportunities.
Each teacher equally contributes to the process. When teachers use the method of co-teaching, they must be willing to work together, equally share responsibility and accountability, and must hold each other in equal regard; otherwise, the method will not work. Teachers must understand that in order to successfully co-teach in a way that will benefit them and the students, more than one aspect of co-teaching should be utilized. The co-teaching method gives student a broader prospective on the subject being taught.
Schools typically require that teachers use co-teaching because it reiterates the ideas in the No Child Left Behind Act and also the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (Muralist & Dicker, 2008). Using co-teaching models is not the only effective method of collaboration; the collaboration between parents and teachers is also extremely effective. Friend and Burdock (2012) suggest several examples of positive ways that teachers and parents can successfully collaborate. The most beneficial method for parent-teacher collaboration is direct parental involvement.
It is widely agreed upon that parental involvement in schools is extremely beneficial for students (Cook, Shepherd, Cook, & Cook, 2012). Parental involvement has been linked to improvement in grades, better attitudes and behaviors, and schools becoming more effective. When parents become involved with the schools, it benefits the child, not only in school but also throughout life. Parents infinite from such involvement as well. They develop a stronger understanding of their child’s educational career, and often develop a closer, more involved relationship with their child, in and out of the classroom.
In addition to a greater understanding of their child, the parents also understand more about the teacher’s teaching methods, which ultimately leads to a closer understanding and greater bond with the teacher as well. With parental involvement being so beneficial, teacher-parent collaboration is widely used throughout the school systems. There are many different ways teachers can collaborate with parents. First, teachers should inform parents, especially of children with disabilities, that teaching methods are constantly changing.
Next, educators should monitor the progress of their students frequently and inform parents of the progress regularly. Also, parents should play an important role in determining what methods are most effective for their children. It is vital that parents and teachers work together to ensure that children are getting the best, most effective education available to them. However, sometimes this collaboration is hard to maintain, not only for parents but for the teachers also. While process. There are a few barriers that work against educators when trying to collaborate.
Sometimes fully understanding and carrying out the collaboration process can Just get to be too much for a teacher. In cases of this nature, it is up to other educators and principals to effectively communicate and assist the struggling teacher. Teachers need all available help and support to ensure that the collaboration process is effectively carried out. Though there are more barriers, time is the biggest barrier that educators face when trying to effectively form elaborations with others. In order to successfully carry out this process, a large amount of planning is required.
However, educators typically are given an insufficient amount of planning time. The number of tasks typically outweighs the number of minutes allotted to planning (Friend and Burdock, 2012). Collaboration with teachers- parents also faces a large time barrier. Most working parents are at their place of employment during school hours. Other parents may have different reasons for being unable to dedicate themselves to the collaboration process, such as a lack of remonstration or lack of childcare for younger children during school hours. This prevents parents from being able to be involved as much as necessary.
On the bright side, teachers and parents can usually work together to overcome these barriers by learning to prioritize and making necessary schedule adjustments. In conclusion, collaboration can be very beneficial to the education system. Collaboration has helped make schools more successful by better educating students and contributing to a more supportive community. Not only does collaboration provide students with he opportunity to learn in new, exciting, and inventive ways, it also gets educators and teachers more directly involved with each student.
Collaboration is important not only for teachers who carry it out, but also for students and their parents. The partnership that is formed through parents, students, and teachers through collaboration can benefit all parties in and outside the classroom throughout life. By allowing kids to receive the most beneficial education available, collaboration provides children with the abilities to not only succeed in school, but in all future endeavors. Collaboration requires a great deal of work, effort and time and is sometimes extremely difficult to carry out.
However, it seems that the benefits of collaboration outweigh the negatives. Ultimately, when educators focus on the positive benefits of collaboration, they will experience the academic, behavioral, and social benefits that their students experience. Collaboration, when approached with a positive attitude, will have wonderful benefits that all teachers involved will experience. Collaboration should be a necessary aspect of the educational process for teachers, students, and parents.