As a culminating assignment for the Ontario Grade 6 Science unit on Space, I assigned roles for French Immersion students to play as we conducted a series of debates. This product includes a handout for the student explaining the assignment, and a list for the teacher's use of various roles that you may assign your students (or small groups of students) to take on. There’s also a brainstorming sheet to help them consider what they already think they know about the things someone in their assigned role would consider as important priorities and what that person may be concerned about.
Then they begin researching the costs and benefits of spatial exploration (environmental, societal and financial) and making comparisons to other priorities within our current society. There are graphic organizers provided for them to organize three points to present, and to anticipate what the person against whom they are debating may argue, to allow them to be prepared in advance to rebut the arguments presented by the other student(s).
The rubric I used is provided in both a full English version & a partially French version (with the criteria still in English for parents.) Students found this assignment to be an interesting and engaging critical thinking activity which allowed them to include content covered during the Space unit, apply research skills and speak in French from notes they had prepared over the previous two weeks in class.
Cover Graphic used under licence from Cosmic Dog Designs.
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