Debate! Students just love to argue! Am I right!
This lesson is a part of my brand new unit on rhetorical analysis. In this lesson, which I call Trump’s Travel Ban Tug of War, my students will have a class debate and discussion regarding President Donald Trump’s travel ban.
I chose a controversial, recent event that had the potential to affect us all. Being able to debate something real that is a part of their lives engages students and helps them to understand the importance of being aware of global issues. In addition, this lesson teaches students the value of having their own opinions on such an important issue rather than following the majority.
Please keep in mind that as this has the potential to be a sensitive topic for some students, global issues still need to be discussed in class. I feel that eleventh graders are mature enough to have respectful discussions.
For this lesson, students first take notes on a list of rhetorical devices they will study within the unit. There are 12 terms with the definition and example provided. This lesson will help them understand the following terms: argument, counterargument, claim, and counterclaim.
♦The lesson includes the following:
♦Twenty-two slide PowerPoint
♦Two articles (opinions in support and in opposition of the travel ban)
♦PowerPoint (labels to place on your board)
♦Pictures of the lesson in action
Back to the lesson! We read the articles as a class and after all explanations, students were divided into two groups based on their personal position regarding the travel ban. The tug of war commenced and students took over twenty minutes posting multiple opinions regarding their position.
As I read their Post-it notes, students were able to understand others’ opinions and even debated a few. I was proud of that they were willing to stand for their beliefs and respect opposite opinions.
Trust me, the lesson was fun and my kids were engaged!
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