They're more actively involved, so they retain the information. They're creative, so they have ownership in how the info is presented. They'll follow the rules more if they have created them, because they understand them.
Those who do the talking do the learning. The students would gain deeper comprehension and better retention. I would introduce the activity by first developing a list of characteristics of good collaborators that I would keep posted the rest of the year. This establishes expectations for all the investigations to come.August 2, 2011 7:56 AM
Patrice and Sydnie, I agree with both of you. Remember that it is the teachers job to help the students make connections for the learning. Without these connections, deeper learning will not evolve.