The purpose of this lesson was to find a way for debate and discussion to take place over Google Meet. This was in response to the Auckland lockdowns and the very teacher centred feel of Google Meets.
I started by introducing an Argumentation Board to my students which contained the prompt 'is it ever okay to steal'. These boards were first created by Rebecca Spies; you can watch a previous lesson about them here.
We then split up into two groups and the girls were given just under ten minutes to come up with three points for or against stealing which they had to summarise in a minute long argument. We then began sharing our ideas over Google Meet.
This was 5/6 students first time in front of the camera for a discussion, which meant that they were far more shy and less forthcoming with discussion. However, many of them got into the debate and became more relaxed during the Google Meet. I did very little talking during the debate - the conversation flowed between the students without coming back to me until the very end which was fantastic. Yet, it was the opposite when we filmed in class due to the camera.
It was also the first time we used an argumentation board and our second debate in class, so the students were still learning the talk frames that I usually set up as well as adding information to justify their ideas. I also only gave the girls about seven minutes to discuss their side of the argument, which was probably too little.
Things to note
It was very tricky to capture sound while we were on Google Meet - I opted to record the sound through my laptop speakers instead of running the microphone between the students as it would have interrupted the flow a lot; the girls were spread out across the school. I have kept the second speakers response to the first for a short time, to demonstrate the conversation but I had to cut it short due to the sound and the next two students are out of order, but were chosen due to sound quality.
Were we to do this at home, I would introduce the prompt and resources to the students a day or two before we held the debate, to give them adequate time to come up with an argument. I would also give them the turn order in advance and remind them at the start so we could continue to have uninterrupted discussion.
Class Site Content
Walt: Share one side of an argument through debate
Read the articles about theft
Discuss whether it is ever okay to steal with the group
A one minute argument sharing one idea that supports your position in the debate
Share your argument on the Google Meet and share your experience on your blog.