The key to successful collaborative learning is to make students accountable for real work that has value for the larger community.
Individuals and groups of teachers interested in social, service learning, and/or academic goals developed collaborative learning at St. Paul's, informally known as buddy projects. Although changing over time, buddy projects and cross-grade activities have become incorporated into the fabric of the curriculum and the life of the school.
Allowing a student to teach another child communicates that the student is trusted. This act says that we know the student-teachers are worthy and responsible. This accountability spills over to other areas, such as homework and general demeanor at school. Giving children opportunities to act responsibly develops citizenship skills.
Snapshots of Lower and Middle School buddy projects