In a nutshell, ‘Kagan’ is a multi-faceted pedagogical approach that uses content-free Kagan Cooperative Learning Structures to ensure active engagement, develop oral language and interpersonal skills, and raise student achievement – across the curriculum.
Kagan ensures all students, and adults, are given equal opportunity to share and be heard, not shamed or singled out, but supported, accepted and affirmed, in a climate of empathy, respect, and tolerance.
Kagan Structures are an integrated approach
Kagan Structures are an integrated approach to curriculum delivery, developing social and communication skills, and creating a safe, culturally responsive and brain-friendly learning environment.
Kagan Structures are Content-Free
That means they can be used with any curriculum area, language, and with any year level.For instance, a RoundRobin can be used for skip-counting in maths, listing living things in science, sharing weekend activities, or listing adjectives about the main character.
Kagan Structures are 'Kagan'
Teachers who have attended any of our trainings, or have any of our resources, collectively name the professional development, resources, and pedagogical and philosophical approach simply as ‘Kagan’.
We believe every learner’s experience should be one where they are:
Taught by competent and caring teachers, every year, that have an extensive repertoire of research-proven skills and strategies to actively engage, support, and grow every student – academically, socially and emotionally
Accepted and appreciated regardless of their culture, sex or ability
Respected and connected through sitting them in teams, and developing connections and interdependence between team members enabling them to support each other, share, and listen and value others’ opinions and perspectives
Safe through learning in a classroom that is inclusive and brain-friendly with core values of empathy, and tolerance, with a genuine appreciation of diversity
Developing and applying key social, communication and interpersonal skills
Actively shown how to be self-regulated learners, who are reflective, discerning, curious and highly motivated
Able to have fun and laugh every day
Kagan Structures allow teachers to address many dimensions of student learning with a single instructional practice.
Kagan Structures enable a classroom teacher to tackle multiple areas simultaneously throughout the class programme, knowing they are supporting all learners – especially their Priority Learners. Our structures are used throughout the day to ensure active engagement for all students – every one talking, every time!
By using structures, teachers can increase student achievement in any content area, enhance students’ thinking skills, reduce classroom disruptions, improve student’s communication skills, address different intelligences, and improve students’ social skills—all at once.
To the uninitiated, group work and cooperative learning are one and the same. Not in our world! This is the biggest ‘aha moment’ for teachers at our PLD – finding out they were doing group work and not cooperative learning.
So…if you’re doing cooperative learning after morning tea on a Wednesday, with roles such as Praiser, Timer, or Recorder, it’s probably group work, and not Kagan.
Kagan versus Group Work
Our biggest barrier is that schools think they are ‘doing’ cooperative learning,
when in fact it is group work – which is fine if that’s what they want.
Just don’t call it cooperative learning as it gives us a bad name.
Kagan Cooperative Learning reduces the achievement gap – group work doesn’t!
What Do We Do?
Jennie is an MOE Accredited Facilitator and brings a wide range of key skills to her facilitator role such as creating school culture, relationship development, cooperative leadership, collaborative practice, and coaching & mentoring.
Our premier Signature PLD develops teacher and leader capability across a wide range of topics and can be a whole day, after-school, or twilight sessions. These can be held at your school or kura, within your CoL, or at a central venue.
Ensure deep learning and sustainable outcomes when you collaborate with Kagan NZ to design and implement quality whole staff development. We work with you to adapt and personalise our powerful research-based strategies to improve student learning and behaviour, school culture, and staff efficacy.
Kagan offers a huge range of resources to support teachers. From timers, to books, to classroom tools such as posters and Learning Chips, our aim is to twofold. To make teachers’ jobs easier by saving them valuable time from making resources, and to increase implementation of PLD by providing the right tools and resources for the job.