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Collaborating like mini professionals

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Duration: 3:10

Brendon Anderson explains how Frankley School students bring real-world business roles into their classroom.

So there's a number of different roles that have to be fulfilled when a group of students go about making an app. Usually there's one student who will take on a leadership role or we call it a project manager role. And that again mirrors what it's like in the world of business or app development. So their job is to make sure that the other members in the group and other subgroups are actually going about their task and keeping to timeframes.

Student 1:
I was a project manager which sort of means I was kind of the glue that held the group together. So at the start of the day I'm like, right we're doing this, and right we're doing that. 

We have coders within the group so there's usually two or three students in a group of five for instance who might take on that role.

Student 2: 
My role is designing the app and researching. So for designing the app you basically have little templates and then you just design it. Oh yes. And we get to design logos. That was our logo that me and Kiahn made. 

Student 3: 
My role was researcher and so we basically looked on Google and lots of different sites and made sure that the facts that we were putting on our site was true.

Student 4: 
So my roles were to be the co-project manager if Ella wasn't there to step in and do that role. And then my other role was a coder, I helped code the app.

There's a number of skills that they pick up through collaborating. They learn how to communicate.

Student 5:
We argued a lot about the app - first when we were making an app name and how to decide what we were going to do it about. It had a lot of arguing because people disagreed. We didn't have a lot of teamwork then and it just got really hard because no one was agreeing with any ideas.  

Some of the things that we do to get the students collaborating effectively is modelling. So at times we've had to role play what that might look like when there is students having a disagreement. We talk about and model: how to actually speak to people. So when you've got students in a group working on real, deep, rich, authentic, challenging tasks like this, there is that tendency for things to get hard and people react in different ways to that. So we talk about ways to react. We talk about the pitch of your voice, the tone of your voice.

Student 5:
We learned that teamwork, even if it gets hard... you can't like... teamwork you have to stay together. And you have to work as a team so if maybe something went wrong and someone did something wrong you wouldn't yell at them or anything you would just help them get through it and try and fix it. Which we tried but yeah.

We have a little saying in our classroom that we want them to be working like mini-professionals. So they're developing the skills and competencies in here that they're actually going to take out to the outside world and use out there. 

Tags: Primary, Collaborative learning, Future focused learning, Project based learning, STEM/STEAM, Design, App development