Embracing collaboration


Adoley Swaniker

Students in Mr.Brandmeyer’s filmmaking class work in groups often. They were editing their upcoming film.

Kitty Knorr, Writer

School is plagued by group projects. However, the sound of a group assignment brings about several different opinions and sounds. When you have friends in your class, a joint project could be exciting. However usually group assignments spark sighs from unhappy students.

But why? Learning how to collaborate is an important skill set right? Well it is, but as of right now, high schoolers don’t see much value in creating a powerpoint about African Decolonization for English Class. However there are many lessons to be learned from the group project.

These assignments give several opportunities for students to work together. From posters to Prezis, sometimes it feels like it take a lot of effort to pull off a group project. This is due in part to the collaboration process, of meeting with fellow group mates and agreeing with fellow group mates. Many passive aggressive arguments have been formed as a result of conflicting personalities working together. However more often than not, students can be categorized by the amount of effort they put into the assignment.

Odds are, the most outspoken person in the group can be deemed a control freak. This term isn’t meant to offend, every group needs a fearless leader to take charge. However, this leadership figure too often is seen as someone who just needs to calm down. Other student demeanors include a moderate control freak. These are the kids who care and want the work to get done. But it’s ok if someone else starts the assignment.

Lastly, who could forget about the category that makes us all detest group projects: the slackers. These kids can be divided into a few categories. First there are slackers who claim to be working and will get offended if you call them out on not working, but then there are also slackers who are proud of their mooching abilities. Some slackers aren’t ashamed to be the leeches that they are.

This is a rather large spectrum of personalities, however we as students should be grateful for this spectrum. If we were all control freaks, everything would get done, but nothing would be cohesive. And if we were all only moderately cared, everything would get done, but not until the last minute. If we were all slackers, nothing would ever get done at all.

So appreciate the students that keep the peace within a group projects. Don’t be afraid to take control, but also be open to what others have to say. The world is a better place when people collaborate–just look towards Jay-Z and Kanye. Keep your head up and don’t hate on group projects.