Training of trainers – NFL and interactive methods in Youth work – ACHIEVE

Lesson 5 – Holistic Teaching and Learning 2 – Cooperative learning – text

text lesson

In cooperative learning students work with each other to accomplish a shared or common goal. The goal is reached through interdependence among all group members rather than working alone. Each member is responsible for the outcome of the shared goal.

Putting groups together in a room does not mean cooperative learning is taking place. In order to have effective cooperative learning each group member must:

  • contribute while also depending on others to accomplish a shared goal or task;
  • praise, encourage, support or assist others;
  • take responsibility for their own learning and contribution as well as group achievement;
  • develop leadership, decision-making, trust-building and communication skills;
  • reflect on group effectiveness and think of ways to improve group work.

Cooperative learning can produce greater learners achievement than traditional learning methodologies. Learners who work individually often compete against others to gain praise or other forms of rewards and reinforcements. The success of these individuals can mean failures for others. There are more winners in a cooperative team because all members reap from the success of an achievement.

One of the essential elements of cooperative learning is the development of social skills. Learners learn to take risks and are praised for their contribution. They are able to see points of view other than their own. Such benefits contribute to the overall satisfaction of learning. Learners work with others who may have different learning skills, cultural background, attitudes, and personalities. These differences force them to deal with conflicts and enrich learning.

Reference – Gibbs,J:Tribes – A New Way of Learning Together. Centre Source Publications, 1994

Adapted from – Holistic Education Network of Tasmania, Australia –


The training program “Training of Trainers” is an educational product that is currently missing in the partner countries – Bulgaria, Cyprus and Romania. Due to the early stage of development of the youth sector and youth work in these countries the educational materials aimed at non-formal learning are still limited and insufficient. The lack of adequate educational framework for training of youth workers in the field of formal education leads to inefficient use of the capacity of professionals.

This course fills a gap in the youth sector, namely the need of methodologies for the preparation of trainers, who are able to train youth workers. This course will set the basis for the preparation of teams of trainers of youth workers. The course will serve the goal of development of youth work in the participating countries and other interested parties. A large number of youth workers can be trained according to the methodology at national and international level to use and promote non-formal learning as a tool to enhance the realization of young people in the labor market and increase their social cohesion.

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