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Stranded on a Ship
In this activity, students practice “inquiry” in pairs and in groups in order to reach a decision, and agree on a list of items that they need to take with them to a nearby island while their ship is sinking.
Students will learn to inquire and ask questions about the motives of others for taking a certain side. Students will learn to come up with ideas how to compromise in order to make a decision that will lead to a win/win situation.
Lead-in / Preparation
- A list of 15 items necessary to survive while stranded on an island.
Estimated Class-Time Required
45 minutes for the whole activity
- 3 minutes for individual work.
- 6 minutes for pair work.
- 10 minutes for group work.
Description of Activities
The instructions, given to the students by the teacher (T):
Instructions while working individually:
You are onboard a ship that is about to sink in the deep water, the rescue boat’s capacity is all the people and only 12 items. You need to choose only 12 items necessary to take with you to an island near you.
Instructions while working in pairs:
You are onboard a ship that is about to sink in the deep water, the rescue boat’s capacity is all the people and only 9 items. In pairs, you need to make a decision and choose only 9 items necessary to take with you to an island near you.
Instructions while working in a group:
You are onboard a ship that is about to sink in the deep water, the rescue boat’s capacity is all the people and only 6 items. In a group, you need to reach a decision and choose only 6 items necessary to take with you to an island near you.
- T gives the students the list of items and gives them the instructions for individual work. T allocates 3 minutes for the individual work.
- T asks few students to speak about their lists. ( 2 minutes)
- T divides the students into pairs and gives them the instructions for working in pairs. (6 minutes)
- T asks students to reflect on the process of reaching a decision. (5 minutes)
- T asks the students to give their partners feedback, whether they inquired about the other’s motif or not (5 minutes)
- T asks the students to sit in a circle and gives them the instructions for working in a group. T also assign 3 students to observe the group discussion and write their remarks. (10 minutes).
- T asks the students to reflect on the process and gives the students some feedback. (10 minutes)
- T asks the observers to say their remarks and what they have noticed. (4 minutes)
Key Vocabulary / Phrases
Motive – motives
Inquire – inquiry
T must observe the students while arguing.
T also assigns observers to check with the students inquire about the other’s motif or not.
Students get feedback from each other, and from the observers.
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