Aggeliki Tsapakidou, Argyrios Kyridis, Eirini Sivropoulou: The effect of a learning group in the understanding of the structure of illustrated short stories for children of a preschool age


Belonging to a group is one of the basic children’s needs. Integrating children into the school group is of utmost importance for the development of the educational process because they are involved emotionally, mentally and visually in the resolution of problems, proposals and constructions. By integrating into the learning groups, children, try to understand the educational material influenced not only by their own learning style but also by the learning methods other members of the group adopt. Thus, children in learning groups are able to reformulate the content of the communication process, draw conclusions and make generalisations, and eventually enhance their knowledge. The objective of the present research is to examine the degree to which learning groups contribute to the understanding of the structure of illustrated short stories. In other words, learning in a learning group will be evaluated and compared to learning based on individual effort. To this end, a pilot research was planned in two kindergartens (one located in an urban area and another in a rural village) over a three month period (March - May 2012). Sixteen toddlers (4.5 -5.5 years), were placed randomly into two groups (experimental and monitoring groups) so as to take part in this research which was conducted in two-phases. Initially a pre-test was given to both groups while at the end of the second phase, they took a post test. A teaching intervention was designed to take place twice a week for both groups for approximately 30 minutes. During the intervention the experimental group worked in small subgroups comprising three to four members, while the members of the monitoring group worked individually. The analysis of the data showed that learning in groups promotes understanding of small stories as compared to individual learning.

MENON: Journal Of Educational Research, (ISSN: 1792-8494)
Full article: ISSUE 2b, 2013 (p. 99-109)