Cooperative learning in physical education encountering Dewey’s educational theory

2020-01-14T10:17:41Z (GMT) by Ashley Casey Mikael Quennerstedt
Cooperative learning can be considered as an umbrella term for a number of classroom practices. In this paper we consider the educative nature of cooperative learning in physical education, and we have challenged ourselves to examine how cooperative learning can enhance the education of young people. We do this by revisiting cooperative learning’s Deweyan foundations and hold that such a move would be a constructive way forward for cooperative learning in physical education. We argue that there is a risk, in not going back to its educational roots, that cooperative learning might just become another way to teach, for example, games or sports, and that it currently puts too much emphasis on destination rather than journey. We suggest that using Dewey’s idea of education and experience would add: a situational element, a directional element, a temporal element, a communal element, and an educative element. In this way, the use of cooperative learning in physical education can move away from exclusively developing students’ skills, towards an open-ended process of becoming where a diversity of students transform and are being transformed by one another.