Effects of cooperative pre-activities on student understanding of high school biology
High school biology learner outcomes require students to understand some complex concepts about physiology, cell biology and ecology. Students in such classes are expected to learn these outcomes, as well as, participate in classroom assignments and activities. Cooperative pre-activities and cooperative learning structures were used to foster student curiosity, encourage dialogue and question asking between students. The pre-activities allowed students to gain some prior knowledge that would not only enhance cognitive development, but increase self-confidence and motivation to become more engaged in the learning environment. The additional cooperative learning structures improved cognitive development, as well as, social development in the classroom. In addition, teacher motivation and improved pedagogy also impacted the learning environment in a positive manner.