Tatang M. Amirin; 6 Februari 2010
Tahu permainan jigsaw? Nah, ini contohnya.
Ada sesuatu benda (gambar) yang dipotong-potong tidak beraturan menjadi beberapa potongan. Potongan-potongan itu dilepas-lepas, sehingga tidak membentuk suatu struktur. Tugas pemain adalah menyatukan potongan-potongan tersebut menjadi satu kesatuan gambar (membentuk gambar) yang utuh dan benar (tepat), tampak ujud gambarnya, misalnya jika gambar burung, ya menjadi gambar burung yang benar.
Proses belajar-mengajar (PBM) dengan menggunakan teknik jigsaw itu merupakan PBM yang menggunakan pendekatan kerja sama (“cooperative learning”) di antara para siswanya dengan berfalsafahkan permainan jigsaw, bukan bermain-main dengan mainan jigsaw (jigsaw puzzles sebagai alat permainan). Kelas dibagi-bagi menjadi “seperti potongan-potongan jigsaw” (kelompok-kelompok). Dalam hal ini diharapkan kelas merupakan satu kesatuan yang utuh (seperti satu gambar jigsaw, misalnya burung, tadi). Jika kelas dibagi-bagi menjadi kelompok-kelompok itu, maka setiap kelompok ibarat bagian dari jigsaw, satu sama lain harus saling melengkapi. Orang per orang murid (dalam kelompok) pun ibarat potongan jigsaw, setiap murid harus menjadi (dianggap, diperlakukan sebagai) bagian penting dari kelompok tersebut. Itu intinya; seperti bagian (potongan) gambar burung yang menjadi bagian penting dari keutuhan gambar burung yang harus terbentuk dari potongan jigsaw tadi.
Teknik jigsaw dikembangkan oleh Profesor Aronson di Austin, Teksas, tahun 1971. Pada ketika itu di sekolah-sekolah terjadi percampuran murid dari berbagai etnis, anak kulit putih, anak kulit hitam Afro-Amerika, dan juga hispanik. Sering terjadi benturan dan keributan di antara mereka karena prasangka rasial yang tinggi. Profesor Alonson dan mahasiswa-mahasiswanya dipanggil untuk menangani kasus tersebut. Setelah melakukan berbagai amatan dan wawancara, lalu dikembangkanlah PBM dengan teknik jigsaw. PBM bernuansa jigsaw itu pada dasarnya merupakan kegiatan belajar murid lewat kerjasama terancang (designed cooperation learning). Tujuan utamanya menumbuhkan kesalingterimaan murid (antar ras, multikulutral), mengembangkan rasa salingpercaya dan salingdukung, serta, tentu, meningkatkan prestasi belajar secara bersama (untuk semua murid).
Kegiatan belajar dengan teknik jigsaw itu tentu harus dirancang dengan memperhatikan materi pelajaran yang akan dipelajari. Tegasnya, tidak setiap materi pelajaran akan cocok atau tepat diajarkan melalui teknik jigsaw. Materi pelajaran (pokok bahasan) harus memuat relatif banyak bagian (subpokok bahasan) yang akan dipelajari oleh setiap anak dari sesuatu kelompok. Setelah tiap-tiap anak mempelajari bagian materi masing-masing, materi (bagian materi) itu akan “diceriterakan” atau dijelaskan oleh setiap anak pada kelompoknya.
Jadi, setiap anak harus mempelajari sendiri subpokok bahasan tertentu, lalu “mengajarkannya” pada teman sekelompoknya. Setiap kelompok terdiri atas 4-5 orang anak, dan pada setiap kelompok ditunjuk salah satu anak yang dianggap “matang” dalam belajar, menjadi ketua kelompok. Kelompok harus beragam etnis, budaya, kemampuan (kecerdasan) belajar, jenis kelamin, dan lain-lain.
Oleh karena setiap anak harus mempelajari sendiri materi bagiannya (dan dijaga jangan sampai mempelajari materi bagian anak lain), maka:
(1) Guru (perpustakaan sekolah) harus menyediakan bacaan materi tersebut secara terpisah-pisah, agar satu orang anak tidak mempelajari materi lain yang bukan bagiannya, karena materi lain ada di situ menjadi gabungan;
(2) Waktu kegiatan dibatasi, dan seketika itu juga akan ada ulangan atau tes. Ini dimaksudkan agar setiap anak fokus pada bagiannya karena waktunya terbatas. Jika banyak waktu luang, apalagi diselingi hari, akan memungkinkan anak mempelajari bagian lain.
Dengan cara itu, maka jika tes meliputi semua materi, jika ada anak yang tidak memperhatikan materi yang “diajarkan” temannya, ia tidak akan tahu (menguasai) materi tersebut, yang dapat berakibat ia tak bisa menjawab tes. Begitu pula jika temannya itu tak bisa menerangkan dengan cukup, maka semua anak di kelompoknya akan mengalami “ketidaktahuan” materi yang akan diteskan secara lengkap.
Seperti telah disebutkan, di setiap kelompok ada satu anak yang akan mempelajari bagian materi pelajaran tertentu. Sebelum si anak masuk dan mengajari temannya di kelompoknya, anak tersebut berkumpul dengan sesama anak yang punya tugas sama dari kelompok lain. Dalam kelompok bertugas khusus itu, mereka mendiskusikan apa yang harus dipelajari, dan mempelajarinya sampai mereka punya materi yang memadai. Tidak harus hapal, karena waktu mengajari temannya bisa sambil buka catatan. Hapal tentu lebih baik, sehingga lancar saat menerangkan.
Jelas dengan demikian bahwa setiap anak akan dua kali “bersosialisasi” dalam keberagaman etnis dll. Pertama, dalam gabungan anggota kelompok dengan tugas sejenis, dan kedua, dengan kelompok bentukan semula tempat ia akan menerangkan materi pelajaran kepada teman-temannya.
Dalam kasus di Austin, ada satu anak yang bernama Carol yang sangat tertekan karena ia kulit hitam, terbiasa berada di lingkungan kulit hitam di desanya, tiba-tiba harus bercampur dalam kelas di kota yang banyak anak kulit putihnya. Ia minder, karena juga bahasa Inggrisnya, walau lancar, tapi banyak dialek yang aneh di telinga anak kulit putih.
Di sisi lain, anak-anak itu, agak beda mungkin dengan di Indonesia, sangat kompetitif, masing-masing ingin menunjukkan kepintarannya. Jadi, ketika guru bertanyakan sesuatu, banyak anak yang tinggi-tinggian mengacungkan jari, bahkan sampai naik ke atas kursi, agar ditanya oleh guru. Mereka kecewa jika tidak ditunjuk. Sebaliknya, yang “tak tahu jawaban” duduk diam, pucat pasi, ketakutan, kuatir ditunjuk juga.
Dalam kegiatan di kelompoknya, pada mulanya Carol sering jadi ejekan dan cemoohan, selain karena kulit hitamnya, juga karena bahasanya. Anak-anak suka bilang “Kamu bodoh, bahasa Inggris saja tak bisa.” Anggota kelompoknya kerap tak peduli dengan yang diomongkan Carol, sehingga Carol tambah grogi dan frustrasi. Gurunya (yang sudah dilatih baik), memberi peringatan dengan mengatakan bahwa tesnya akan diadakan lima belas menit lagi. Jika anak-anak tidak mendengarkan penjelasan Carol, maka bisa jadi tidak bisa menjawab soal tes, karena tak tahu apa yang diterangkan Carol.
Sejak saat itu mulailah anak-anak yang lain (karena ingin berhasil tes dengan baik) memperhatikan “pelajaran” dari Carol. Bahkan, jika Carol ada kesulitan dalam bahasa dan penguasaan materi, mereka membantu menuntunnya agar benar menguasainya dan mampu menyampaikannya dengan bai9k dan benar. Sejak saat itu pulalah Carol merasa anak-anak lain benar-benar teman, dan anak yang lain pun merasa Carol benar-benar teman yang dibutuhkan (sebagai bagian dari jigshaw kelompok).
Nah, ingin tahu lebih lanjut tentang PBM berjigsaw itu? Baca naskah aslinya berikut.
History of the Jigsaw
An Account from Professor Aronson
The jigsaw classroom was first used in 1971 in Austin, Texas. My graduate students and I had invented the jigsaw strategy that year, as a matter of absolute necessity to help defuse an explosive situation. The city’s schools had recently been desegregated, and because Austin had always been racially segregated, white youngsters, African-American youngsters, and Hispanic youngsters found themselves in the same classrooms for the first time.
Within a few weeks, long-standing suspicion, fear, and distrust between groups produced an atmosphere of turmoil and hostility. Fist-fights erupted in corridors and schoolyards across the city. The school superintendent called me in to see if we could do anything to help students get along with one another. After observing what was going on in classrooms for a few days, my students and I concluded that inter-group hostility was being fueled by the competitive environment of the classroom.
Let me explain. In every classroom we observed, the students worked individually and competed against each other for grades. Here is a description of a typical fifth grade classroom that we observed:
The teacher stands in front of the class, asks a question, and waits for the children to signal that they know the answer. Most often, six to ten youngsters raise their hands, lifting themselves off their chairs and stretching their arms as high as they can in an effort to attract the teacher’s attention. Several other students sit quietly with their eyes averted, hoping the teacher does not call on them.
When the teacher calls on one of the eager students, there are looks of disappointment on the faces of the other students who had tried to get the teacher’s attention. If the selected student comes up with the right answer, the teacher smiles, nods approvingly, and goes on to the next question. In the meantime, the students who didn’t know the answer breathe a sigh of relief. They have escaped being humiliated this time
It took only a few days of observation and interviews for us to see what was going on in these classrooms. We realized that we needed to shift the emphasis from a relentlessly competitive atmosphere to a more cooperative one. It was in this context that we invented the jigsaw strategy. Our first intervention was with fifth graders. First we helped several teachers devise a cooperative jigsaw structure for the students to learn about the life of Eleanor Roosevelt. We divided the students into small groups, diversified in terms of race, ethnicity and gender, making each student responsible for a specific part of Roosevelt’s biography. Needless to say, at least one or two of the students in each group were already viewed as “losers” by their classmates.
Carlos was one such student. Carlos was very shy and insecure in his new surroundings. English was his second language. He spoke it quite well, but with a slight accent. Try to imagine his experience: After attending an inadequately funded, substandard neighborhood school consisting entirely of Hispanic students like himself, he was suddenly bussed across town to the middle class area of the city and catapulted into a class with Anglo students who spoke English fluently, seemed to know much more than he did, and who were not reluctant to let him know it.
When we restructured the classroom so that students were now working together in small groups, this was initially terrifying to Carlos. Now he could no longer slink down in his chair and hide in the back of the room. The jigsaw structure made it necessary for him to speak up when it was his turn to recite. Although he had gained a little confidence by rehearsing together with others who were also studying Eleanor Roosevelt’s work with the United Nations, he was still reluctant to speak when it was his turn to teach the students in his jigsaw group. He blushed, stammered, and had difficulty covering the material he had learned. Skilled in the ways of the competitive classroom, the other students were quick to ridicule him.
One of my research assistants heard some members of Carlos’s group make comments such as, “You’re stupid. You don’t know what you’re doing. You can’t even speak English.” Instead of admonishing them to “be nice” or “try to cooperate,” she made one simple but powerful statement. It went something like this: “Talking like that to Carlos might be fun for you to do, but it’s not going to help you learn anything about what Eleanor Roosevelt accomplished at the United Nations–and the exam will be given in about 15 minutes.” In other words, she reminded the students that the situation had changed. The same behavior that might have been useful to them in the past, when they were competing against each other, was now going to cost them something very important: a chance to do well on the exam.
Needless to say, old, dysfunctional habits do not die easily. But they do die. Within a few days of working with jigsaw, Carlos’s group-mates gradually realized that they needed to change their tactics. It was no longer in their own best interest to rattle Carlos; they needed him to perform well in order to do well themselves. In effect, they had to put themselves in Carlos’s shoes in order to find a way to ask questions that didn’t undermine his performance.
After a week or two, most of Carlos’s group-mates developed into skillful interviewers, asking him relevant questions and helping him articulate clear answers. And as Carlos succeeded, his group-mates began to see him in a more positive light. Moreover, Carlos saw himself in a new light, as a competent member of the class who could work with others from different ethnic groups. His self-esteem grew, and as it grew, his performance improved even more. In addition, Carlos began to see his group-mates as friendly and supportive. The ethnic stereotypes that the Anglo kids held about Carlos and that Carlos held about the Anglo kids were in the process of changing dramatically. School became a more humane, exciting place, and absenteeism declined.
Within a few weeks, the success of the jigsaw was obvious. Teachers told us how pleased they were at the change in atmosphere. Visitors expressed amazement at the transformation. Needless to say, this was exciting to my graduate students and me. But as scientists, we needed more objective evidence–and we got it. Because we had randomly introduced the jigsaw intervention into some classrooms and not others, we were able to compare the progress of the jigsaw students with that of students in traditional classrooms. After only eight weeks there were clear differences, even though students spent only a small portion of their time in jigsaw groups. When tested objectively, jigsaw students expressed less prejudice and negative stereotyping, were more self-confident, and reported liking school better than children in traditional classrooms. Moreover, children in jigsaw classes were absent less often than were other students, and they showed greater academic improvement; poorer students in the jigsaw classroom scored significantly higher on objective exams than comparable students in traditional classes, while the good students continued to do as well as the good students in traditional classes.
Jigsaw in 10 Easy Steps
The jigsaw classroom is very simple to use. If you’re a teacher, just follow these steps:
1. Divide students into 5- or 6-person jigsaw groups. The groups should be diverse in terms of gender, ethnicity, race, and ability.
2. Appoint one student from each group as the leader. Initially, this person should be the most mature student in the group.
3. Divide the day’s lesson into 5-6 segments. For example, if you want history students to learn about Eleanor Roosevelt, you might divide a short biography of her into stand-alone segments on: (1) Her childhood, (2) Her family life with Franklin and their children, (3) Her life after Franklin contracted polio, (4) Her work in the White House as First Lady, and (5) Her life and work after Franklin’s death.
4. Assign each student to learn one segment, making sure students have direct access only to their own segment.
5. Give students time to read over their segment at least twice and become familiar with it. There is no need for them to memorize it.
6. Form temporary “expert groups” by having one student from each jigsaw group join other students assigned to the same segment. Give students in these expert groups time to discuss the main points of their segment and to rehearse the presentations they will make to their jigsaw group.
7. Bring the students back into their jigsaw groups.
8. Ask each student to present her or his segment to the group. Encourage others in the group to ask questions for clarification.
9. Float from group to group, observing the process. If any group is having trouble (e.g., a member is dominating or disruptive), make an appropriate intervention. Eventually, it’s best for the group leader to handle this task. Leaders can be trained by whispering an instruction on how to intervene, until the leader gets the hang of it.
10. At the end of the session, give a quiz on the material so that students quickly come to realize that these sessions are not just fun and games but really count.
Tips on Implementation
Compared with traditional teaching methods, the jigsaw classroom has several advantages:
- Most teachers find jigsaw easy to learn
- Most teachers enjoy working with it
- It can be used with other teaching strategies
- It works even if only used for an hour per day
- It is free for the taking
Too good to be true? Well, yes and no. It would be misleading to suggest that the jigsaw sessions always go smoothly. Occasionally, a dominant student will talk too much or try to control the group. How can we prevent that? Some students are poor readers or slow thinkers and have trouble creating a good report for their group. How can we help them? At the other end of the talent continuum, some students are so gifted that they get bored working with slower students. Is the jigsaw technique effective with them? In some cases, students may never have experienced cooperative learning before. Will the jigsaw technique work with older students who have been trained to compete with one another? All of these problems are real but not fatal.
The Problem of the Dominant Student
Many jigsaw teachers find it useful to appoint one of the students to be the discussion leader for each session, on a rotating basis. It is the leader’s job to call on students in a fair manner and try to spread participation evenly. In addition, students quickly realize that the group runs more effectively if each student is allowed to present her or his material before question and comments are taken. Thus, the self interest of the group eventually reduces the problem of dominance.
The Problem of the Slow Student
Teachers must make sure that students with poor study skills do not present an inferior report to the jigsaw group. If this were to happen, the jigsaw experience might backfire (the situation would be akin to the untalented baseball player dropping a routine fly ball with the bases loaded, earning the wrath of teammates). To deal with this problem, the jigsaw technique relies on “expert” groups. Before presenting a report to their jigsaw groups, each student enters an expert group consisting of other students who have prepared a report on the same topic. In the expert group, students have a chance to discuss their report and modify it based on the suggestions of other members of their expert group. This system works very well. In the early stages, teachers may want to monitor the expert groups carefully, just to make sure that each student ends with an accurate report to bring to her or his jigsaw group. Most teachers find that once the expert groups get the hang of it, close monitoring becomes unnecessary.
The Problem of Bright Students Becoming Bored
Boredom can be a problem in any classroom, regardless of the learning technique being used. Research suggests, however, that there is less boredom in jigsaw classrooms than in traditional classrooms. Youngsters in jigsaw classes report liking school better, and this is true for the bright students as well as the slower students. After all, being in the position of a teacher can be an exciting change of pace for all students. If bright students are encouraged to develop the mind set of “teacher,” the learning experience can be transformed from a boring task into an exciting challenge. Not only does such a challenge produce psychological benefits, but the learning is frequently more thorough.
The Problem of Students Who Have Been Trained to Compete
Research suggests that jigsaw has its strongest effect if introduced in elementary school. When children have been exposed to jigsaw in their early years, little more than a “booster shot” (one hour per day) of jigsaw in middle school and high school is required to maintain the benefits of cooperative learning. But what if jigsaw has not been used in elementary school? Admittedly, it is an uphill battle to introduce cooperative learning to 16-year olds who have never before experienced it. Old habits are not easy to break. But they can be broken, and it is never too late to begin. Experience has shown that although it generally takes a bit longer, most high school students participating in jigsaw for the first time display a remarkable ability to benefit from the cooperative structure.