Review of Related Literature
The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of using math cooperative learning groups on a second grade class at Cypress Cove Elementary School during the academic year of 2016-2017. This chapter focuses on conceptual understanding and the effectiveness of cooperative learning groups in math as well as the influence of group processing on achievement.
Making Connections in Math Cognitive development occurs when students use their current knowledge of a subject’s concepts and procedures to learn new material. Math is no different. Students use what they already know as a foundation for learning new math skills. Teachers who understand this aspect of cognitive development and know how to build on what their students already have learned are effective educators (Sidney & Alibali, 2015).
In a study of fifth and sixth graders being taught division by fractions, Sidney et al. (2015), found that students drew on their past knowledge to understand new problems. Students used their prior knowledge to activate the transfer of the new information.
The Effectiveness of Cooperative Learning
Using differentiated instruction helps build existing knowledge and activates prior knowledge. Once students have gained a deeper level of understanding, using cooperative learning groups is beneficial because it enhances academic achievement, student attitudes, and student retention (Hsiung, 2012). Cooperative learning also provides a natural