Characteristics the Middle Phase of Social Group Gormation.

The middle phase of social group occupies the major part of the working life of the group. Members attend the sessions regularly and actively working towards accomplishing the goals.

Making Arrangements for Group Sessions:

The worker and members plan for the group meetings. The worker spend extensive time in the development of activities and procedures for the group meetings. A lot of decisions are taken with regard to the selection of task, sequencing of tasks, assigning responsibilities etc. Materials and equipment for group activities have to be procured. Resource agencies and persons have to be contacted.

Structuring the Time:

The worker continues to set time limits for group sessions. The members and the worker have tube relatively mindful about the time and how to get maximum benefits from these group meeting, Usually, it is seen that for late corners meeting is withheld. This should not be done as it encourages them to be late and it annoys the ones who come on time. It also happens that the meetings are either closed early or late. This is also not healthy as it causes inconvenience to members who have other works to attend and discourage them to attending or they may not pay proper attention to the group activity.

It is possible to get engrossed in a particular group task but it is also bad to lose track of time. This may stumble over the other activity and giving the consequent activity less time. Therefore, the benefits of the following activity are badly affected. So it is important that members must carefully structure their time and follow it.

Facilitating the Group Sessions:

The foremost reason to form the group is enabling the members to come on and work towards solving their problems. This means that group needs guidance and support to carry out this work. The worker has to facilitate the group to perform.

In this stage, the members pursue goals set for both individual and group. Worker inspires members to work actively and discuss and solve the problem. The worker, by now get to know about the strengths and weaknesses of group members. It is also noticed that some members are working hard and others are sitting just idly and due to this fact group’s progress gets, affected. The worker tries to encourage the non-performing members to perform.

Interpersonal limitations revolve around feelings, thoughts, beliefs and behaviour patterns of the member. The worker facilitates interpersonal interactions whenever he/she finds them deteriorating. Deteriorating interpersonal relations are discerned when members fail to communicate with each other, participate in the group activities, avoids some members, differ and pick up quarrels with each other, and form subgroups and work against each other.

The worker helps to improve the interpersonal interactions by introducing a number of ice breaking, role-playing, modelling, and simulation exercises. At the environmental level worker connects the members with resources, creates congenial physical and social environment. The worker facilitates the member to perform in desired direction by making them to understand these mental states.

The worker then make suggestions for framing and restructuring of the thoughts and expressions, as well as for stopping of the recurrence of unhealthy thoughts to enable the member to deal with these cognitive processes.

Assessment of Group’s Performance:

The group performance is assessed to ensure group’s attainment of its goals. It gives proper direction and guidance to the group. It even includes assessment of participation and involvement in group activities, the changes that are taking place in the members’ perceptions, attitudes and behaviors, acquisition of new skills, and strengthening of existing skills that would help members to deal with their problem areas and grow. The assessment is done by the worker and members. The tools used in assessment are:

Structured Observations: Worker and other members observe themselves. For example, to assess communication between the members then worker may not inform the members but he silently observes the verbal and non-verbal modes of communication of the group members. Members are assessed on the basis of gestures, language used for each other, verbal and non verbal modes of communication.

Recording of Group Meetings: Written reports, audio and videotapes, measurement scales of behaviour, and socio gram etc. are used as a tool for assessment of group performance. Leadership styles, sub-group formation, conflicts, are some of the areas that can be assessed by the above mentioned tools.

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