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Original Lesson Title
- The use of violence can be justified.
- Students to identify key arguments and supporting evidence, and critique them.
Original Lesson Description / Plan
Students are given the above motion. They are divided into 2 opposing groups and given 20 minutes to brainstorm ideas to support their case. After this, they engage in a debate. Each group sends out 3 representatives who are given 3 minutes each to present their case. 5 minutes will be given to the floor after the second speaker from each team has presented. The final speaker from each group presents their case. Towards the end of the lesson, the teacher gets the class to identify key arguments and to evaluate the supporting evidence presented.
Some useful links for helping students to structure & evaluate arguments:
Some useful resources on violence:
Some useful resources specific types of violence:
Our experience of working on the different web 2.0 tools
We found the slideshare website very useful. Resources were current and ready to be used. Some of the pictures in the slideshows are useful and if they can be downloaded, we can actually use them in the classroom (vs Google Images which may not be free for use)
Even though the page was edited and updated, the changes were not always captured. There appears to be a time-lag. We liked the fact that both of us could work on adding points to the wiki at the same time. The alert was particularly helpful in cueing the other party to await her turn to upload the changes.
We found this application really user-friendly. Changes made by one person can be seen by the other party very quickly and this alows for immediate feedback.
Suggested Lesson Plan:
Video/ Images of violence (Google Images)
Provide definition of violence
The World Health Organization defines violence as:
The intentional use of physical force or power, threatened or actual, against oneself, another person, or against a group or community, that either results in or has a high likelihood of resulting in injury, death, psychological harm, maldevelopment or deprivation.
Students to brainstorm different types of violence (e.g. war, terrorism, gender violence, domestic violence etc)
Pinker’s podcast to be shown to students.
students to identify his main arguments and supporting evidence
Students access the forum page (
They will be asked to look at 5 posts within a stipulated timeframe). Similarly they have to identify the main arguments and supporting evidence.
This may be useful for weaker students who may have difficulty following a lengthy argument. The shorter forum contributions are more accessible and easily understood.
Problems: Inappropriate register/ poor grammar (could be potential learning points), teacher is unable to monitor recent posts (thus, students have to be given a timeframe)
Students will be divided into groups of 4 and given the question “Can the use of violence ever be justified?”. In addressing this, they are required to collaborate and critique Pinker’s / the forum’s arguments using Google Docs.
Post the group discussion on Wiki and invite the other members of the class to comment.
This lesson is likely to take place over at least 2 lessons (say about a week) to allow students sufficient time to collaborate and comment on posts of different groups.
What research was done when designing the new lesson plan?
Put live links to them if on the internet
New Tools and Resources
Did you learn of any new tools, websites, applications .... or classroom management strategies ... put links to them if on the web .... also give an assessment ... useful or not ... useful in another situation.
New lesson incorporating ICT
Note from Chris
(after the workshop)These URLs might be helpful ..
help on how to format text
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