In the thick of it

Early in the school year I have already transferred some of my experience into the classroom. There are so many cool apps and ways to use technology that I have forgotten who and where I picked them up, sorry for not giving credit. One specific thing I have used with huge success thus far is the team structure we used in our specific research project.
For my astronomy class I created task forces that are responsible for completing large tasks and projects. Every student has a set role of responsibility and invariably they pick slack in areas they are talented in. Having been part of a team recently, I am familiar with the dynamics of a team vs. a “group project”. When each student has a responsibility, and is held to that standard each student has a value and feels that value. Students have already expressed happiness and engagement in their teams. One team even sparked a romantic relationship. That is a side effect, not necessarily an eventuality but any way to create a class culture is good by me. Culture and shared experience is the best way to engage students and create a space where everyone feels important and valued.