No society or a group of people can successfully work or exist together without rules that govern interactions and behaviour amongst themselves.
Ground rules are basic rules and principles on which future actions and behaviour of a group, or an individual within a group, will be based.
Ground rules can be set at many different levels as follows:
Statutory Level The lawmakers set ground rules for the citizens’ safety e.g. the Health and Safety act, no smoking in any enclosed public places, etc.
Local Level For example, if there is a class being held in an educational centre, then the centre will have its own ground rules e.g. no food or drink in the classrooms, etc.
Group Level A working group or class can decide and agree amongst themselves to have ground rules that will ensure a smooth, comfortable and ...view middle of the document...
It is important that group ground rules are established right at the beginning of the task or a course.
Ground rules can be established by the whole group working as one or splitting the group into smaller groups defining their own ground rules and then the smaller groups coming together and combining the rules that the individual groups have come up with.
In our PTTLS group, we were split into three different groups and each group then wrote their rules on a flip chart. Once each of the groups had done their ground rules, the flip charts were displayed on the wall so that the whole group could see what each individual group had produced. It was interesting to see how similar each of the group’s rules were. Where there was a rule on a flip chart that was not on any other group’s flipchart, the group discussed it and decided whether or not to include it their overall ground rules. The set of ground rules that we came up with as a whole group are as follows:
• Be Respectful
• Be Punctual
• Actively Listen
• Do not get personal
• Full Participation from Everyone
• Be understanding / supportive
• Encourage and motivate
• Understand strengths / weaknesses of other learners
• Do not be afraid to ask for help
• No Bad language / attitude
• Enjoy Yourself
• Well planned lessons / Be prepared
• Positive Attitude
• Keep Room Tidy
• Switch off Mobile Phones
• Behave Appropriately
Group ground rules should not be set in stone. They need to be regularly revised and updated so that they are relevant and people can actually execute and follow them. So that the whole group is aware of the ground rules they need to be accessible by everyone at all times, for example by putting them on flipcharts and sticking them onto the wall.
Having negotiated and set the ground rules, it is the responsibility of each member of the group to challenge anyone when they break or do not observe the rules.