WHAT IT IS:
Think Tank Groups are student-driven collaborative feedback groups for sharing work, generating ideas, and giving/receiving feedback.
HOW IT WORKS:
The teacher groups students 3-4 per group. In general, think tank groups work best with either diverse ability levels or homogeneous ability levels, depending on the specific uses.
As students work on classroom tasks (regardless of the nature of the tasks), the think tank group serves as the first destination for support, feedback, or brainstorming. The teacher can structure this deliberately by assigning routine check-in times for the group through the day or week or allow for students to set such schedules as a group or operate as-needed.
The goal of the groups extends beyond individual projects or tasks. Students might seek support or feedback on anything going on in class regardless of whether it was assigned to group work or not.
For greatest success, the teacher should devote substantial time and opportunity for groups to develop trust and rapport. Consider things like Group Contracts and collaboration norms for improved relatedness and efficiency.