Instructional Practice

Effective Practices

Take a Stand

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Sometimes it is challenging for teachers to hold back their own opinions, so try not to give any hints or show bias towards one opinion or another as these cues can easily influence the response of students.

Remember to have students Take a Stand at times when the original answer was right and at times when it was wrong. Use various methods to solicit responses from students, and follow up on stands of any sort to avoid letting Take a Stand become a cursory routine.

Quick Tips

Be sure to block off enough time in the lesson for students to answer, defend, and reflect on their positions when planning.

When there are students who are not participating, script a brief reminder to students, “Since we’re all scholars, I’ll expect to see everyone’s hand. Let’s try it again.”


Blog on Take a Stand

Take a Stand Protocol


Other Strategies

Classroom Debate

Students take opposing positions on a topic or issue. The teacher provides opportunities for students to research and learn about the topic/issue. Students then take a stand for one side or the other in a structured discussion over the topic where both sides have an equal opportunity to defend their position.

Classroom debates provide students with opportunities to build their skills in leadership, team building, group problem solving and oral presentation. Embedding debate skills into the curriculum increases student engagement and rigor.