English - Explosive arguments

7th December 2012 at 00:00

What it's all about

Bomb Factor takes the form of a talent contest. Three pupils are chosen to play the judges and each is given a card: the first displays facts supporting nuclear weapons, the second presents arguments against them, while the third carries debating points on how to reduce nuclear danger, writes Victoria Grace Walden.

The rest of the class is divided into groups of three. Each group is given a card identifying them as a country or organisation with a vested interest in the debate. On each card are facts, beliefs and future plans pertaining to the country or organisation.

"Contestants" have 15 minutes to plan their presentation. One by one, the groups make their way on to the stage, introduce themselves - and then it's X-Factor-style show time. They have just two minutes to convince the judges.

The "Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament" team has choreographed a dance to express why money earmarked for nuclear weapons should be spent on education. The "Russian" team delivers a rap: "America has them, so why can't we?" Meanwhile, "Team Nato" sings the predictably middle-ground jingle, "Why can't we all just get along?" The teams are then grilled by the judges, who use their cards to try to pull the arguments apart.

The show finishes with pupils taking part in a "phone-in vote" to decide whether nuclear weapons should be kept or countries disarmed.

What else?

Download the lesson plan and resources for PeaceEducation's Bomb Factor for free from TES Resources, bit.lyBombFactor.

sjb1987 has shared golden rules on how to ensure that pupils get the best out of speaking and listening assignments, bit.lySpeakingAndListening.

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