The practice of putting individuals together based on their strengths and aptitudes in a learning environment is known as ability grouping. Ability grouping is the act of placing students into groups based on their abilities. Teachers can give more or less work to those who need it. This helps students learn better, and they do well in school.
Educators may also give reinforcement and repetition to struggling students, as well as more advanced instruction to higher achievers.
There are two types: ability grouping by level for specific skills, and ability grouping by general skills. For example, a child who is good at math may be placed in a group where all the other kids are good at math, or a child who is very athletic may be grouped with other kids who enjoy sports. These methods of ability grouping have some pros and cons that I will discuss later in this paper.
For now, though, understanding what these terms mean will help you better understand how they work. So let’s get started!
Ability grouping by level for specific skills
This is a method of ability grouping where children who excel at a certain skill, such as math or reading, are grouped together so that their teacher can focus on developing their strengths.
The pros to this are that kids usually enjoy being good at school subjects and they feel better about themselves when they do well in something because it’s something they’re good at. So teachers could use the child’s enjoyment of what he/she does best to motivate them to do well in other areas as well.
The cons to this is that, if the child isn’t very strong in another area like social studies or science, then his/her smaller skillset will become even smaller and there may not be enough time and resources to teach him/her all of the information he/she needs in order to pass.
Ability grouping by general skills
This is a method of ability grouping were children who enjoy similar hobbies, such as sports or music, are grouped together so that their teacher can focus on developing those skills.
The pros to this are that it reinforces what the child has already learned and discovered an interest in. The child may be motivated to do well because his/her friends will be doing better than they would if they were not grouped together.
The cons to this are that if the child isn’t good at these kinds of skills then his/her skill set will shrink rapidly and/she might feel discouraged about learning anything new.