There are a number of tools available to encourage cooperation and collaboration across digital, hybrid, remote, and in-person classrooms. From low-tech tools like the telephone to high-tech services like Zoom and Google Meet, students and teachers can stay connected and interact in ways never seen before.
There are approximately 300 million cell phones active in the United States, yet more people spend less time using these phones to actually make a phone call. Encourage students to make use of their phone by calling a fellow student to practice and reinforce vocabulary using flashcards.
Even with an active pandemic, having students interact safely outside with masks poses minimal risk of transmission. Let the students engage in a collaborative activity outside so that they have a small sense of normalcy while practicing, reinforcing, or learning something new.
The collaboration tools available in Google Docs allow students to be virtually looking over each others shoulders. With the ability to contribute to and edit a document in real time, activities like peer editing, collaborative storytelling, and research can be easily done.
Online whiteboard tools can allow students to brainstorm ideas, and engage in matching, sorting, or ranking activities.
Zoom, Google Meet, and Microsoft Teams provide platforms that make face to face, real time interaction a piece of cake encouraging activities like snowballing and role playing.
With breakout rooms, you can divide students into smaller groups to do think/pair/shares, listening triangles, and other traditional small group activities.
Slack and project management platforms like it are great spaces for students and teachers to collaborate on a long term projects or higher level courses at the secondary level.
Chat & Groups
Google has some new products that really streamline online collaboration. Group chats and rooms can be created to have students discuss research and ideas online.