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Discussion Web

The Discussion Web helps students understand different points of view on a subject by actively involving everyone.


  • As a Leader, compose closed questions/statements (yes or no/true or false) on central topics in the covered course material that will generate interest and different views.
  • Write down the first question/statement on the white-board/flip-chart, allowing for affirmative or disagreeing arguments on each side of the question/statement.
  • Appoint a scribe and let the students brainstorm - coming upp with arguments for and against. See to that the scribe have time to write down all arguments on appropriate sides.
  • Then ask the students to work in pairs and decide which conclusion that seems most valid. Let each pair vote and come to a whole-group conclusion. Repeat with the other questions/statements.
  • Conclude with a discussion about the strategy: Did this strategy help you to see both sides of an issue? Did the strategy allow you to have an active role in the discussion?

References and Further Reading:

  • Alvermann, D (1991). The Discussion Web: a graphic aid for learning across the curriculum. The Reading Teacher, 45, 92-99; Buehl, D (2001). Classroom Strategies for Interactive Learning. Newark, DE: International Reading Association
  • Santa C.M., Havens, L.T. & Valdes B.J., (2004). Project Criss - Creating Independence through Student-owned Strategies. Helping teachers teach and learners learn. Third Edition. Kendall/Hunt Publishing Company. Dubuque, Iowa)
Discussion Web