Collaborative Learning Cycle

Collaborative Learning Cycle
Laura Lipton & Bruce Wellman

The collaborative learning cycle is a framework that establishes a learning forum for group exploration of data; problem-solving protocol using multiple measures of data.

Activate and Engage

1. Use a blank template that mirrors the data that will be shared
2. Set a time limit and stick to this time
3. Each person fills out the blank template based on their own predictions
about the data
4. Each then writes 3-4 predictive statements
5. Round Robin the predictive statements and record them on chart paper

Explore and Discover

1. Determine the time for this phase
2. Individuals look at data silently.
• What important points pop out to us?
• What patterns, categories, or trends are emerging?
• What is surprising or unexpected?
3. Individually record observation of the data in the form of narrative
4. Remember to keep the “why” out of the conversation – invoke Darth Vader!
5. Round Robin report out and record narrative statement on chart paper.
6. As a group identify two or three narrative statements that you want to
investigate as you move forward.

Organizing and Integrating

1. Choose one narrative statement
2. Identify possible causal theories in each category listed. Remember to focus
on what is in your control
3. Determine which two or three casual theories you believe have the most
influence on the narrative statement and are within your control.
4. Identify short term and long term actions that you will take to address the
identified causal factors.
5. Determine actions steps, how the actions will be measured, timelines and
responsibilities for those causal theories closest to your work.
6. Identify your immediate next step
7. Repeat for another narrative statement as time permits

Causal Theories


Systemic planning and implementation, knowledge, skills, disposition

Schedules, programming, and resources

Design and implementation

Methods, materials, and resources

Knowledge, skills, and disposition

Knowledge, skills, and disposition

     Causal Theories