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Discussion Web
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Upper elementary and above

  • Comprehension

  • Critical reading/thinking

  • Look at issues from different perspectives

  • Summarize

  • Writing

  • Select a story or article that presents conflicting opinions of a character’s actions or which deals with a controversial topic.

  • After the students have read the selection, introduce the Discussion Web and the focus question for discussion.

    • For example, after reading an article on the war in Iraq, the focus question might be: Should Americans have started the war in Iraq?

  • Students work with partners, discuss the focus question, and present reasons for both sides of the issue.

    • They determine the “yes” reasons for the focus question and write them in the chart.

    • Then they determine the “no” reasons for the issue and write them in the appropriate column.

  • Have one set of partners combine with another set of partners, share, and discuss their discussion webs.

  • They may add additional arguments to both sides of the question and then formulate and write a summary statement.

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