Controversy

#plenary #group collaboration #

Method 1:
Ask each group for 5 statements of evidence or argument for their case. Write these statements on the board. If a class comes too quickly to agreement on a complex issue, play devil’s advocate to create a controversy. When this is complete, the groups break off again to come up with 5 statements of rebuttal of the other team’s arguments. At the end ask if any students have changed their minds, and why.

Method 2:
You act as a moderator, asking students from one group, then the other, to support their position. At set intervals, say 15 minutes, students are allowed to change groups if they have changed their minds. Optionally, the students can then be asked to argue for the other side. At the end, the moderator summarises the main points for and against. By creating a controversy and forcing interaction, these methods encourage all students to participate.