The Game: An Engaging Student-Centered Approach to Argument

Rated 4.9 out of 5, based on 58 reviews
58 Ratings
The Rhetor's Toolbox
Grade Levels
9th - 12th
Resource Type
Formats Included
  • Zip
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The Rhetor's Toolbox


Students will beg, plead, implore you to play The Game again and again. Year after year, my students cite The Game as one of their most memorable, provocative, and useful activities.

This team-based approach introduces students to argumentation based on what they already know and do. Students will compete to win The Game by strategically appealing to their audience (peers). After taking notes on the different presentations, they will vote on a winner. Discussion/analysis questions allow you to facilitate a thoughtful debrief of the activity and provide opportunities to bring in materials, ideas, vocabulary, and strategies that are relevant to your instruction around argument.

This activity is open-ended enough to function as a formative or summative assessment of students' argumentation skills. It requires minimal prep on the part of the teacher. Additionally, the open-ended nature allows for easy differentiation: use intentional grouping (high, medium, and low performing students) to support individual students' needs and work with groups as needed during their prep time.

In this .zip folder download, you will find:
-A PowerPoint with teacher and student instructions, along with reflection questions. The PowerPoint can stand alone as a NO-PREP lesson guide.
-A PDF file with resources to help you and your students get the most out of The Game, including a teacher overview of the materials, timing, and procedure; student planning guide; note taking page for student use during presentations; debrief/analysis questions that can be used for oral or written reflection; ballot slips.

You will need to provide:
-Prizes for winners (that's it!)

This product is also available in the AP Language and Composition Bundle.A friendly note: This work is protected by copyright. You may use my products in your classroom, but you may not distribute them (this includes posting them online for public access). The copyright information on each page must remain intact. If you are interested in sharing with your colleagues, please send them the link to my store! Multiple license discounts are available.

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Total Pages
Answer Key
Teaching Duration
90 minutes
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