Happy talk

5th October 2007 at 01:00
Any lesson

Ages 11 to 16

It is good practice to allow discussion in your class but, at times, it can turn into a free-for-all. To let everyone have their say in an organised debate, give each pupil red, green and yellow cards.

Tell them the green equates to building on someone else's point, yellow means involving someone in the discussion and red is disagreeing politely.

Kick off the discussion with a topic statement. Pupils can volunteer to agree and build on it by holding up the green card or to disagree with the red card.

Once the pupil has finished, the teacher takes the card and picks another pupil to speak. Or the pupil speaking can choose the next debater by using their yellow card to ask for their opinion.

Everyone has to use all their cards and can't speak once they have none left

Rebekah Holt Rebekah Holt is an English teacher at Stockport School in Cheshire

Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?


To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers


Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar, Buyagift.com, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today