In order to encourage critical thinking skills, it is essential for students to be exposed to different ideas and ways of thinking. Showing videos that discuss topics from different perspectives is a great way to achieve this. After viewing each video, have students evaluate the arguments used in each to form their own opinion on the topic.
By providing both images and audio, videos provide an extra layer of insight into a topic than reading a text piece or listening to oral arguments alone. This makes videos an excellent way to introduce ideas to students as well as to compare ideas.
After students watch each video, have them write down their impression of the arguments used as well as the imagery used. By encouraging students to take a few moments to record their thoughts, you can ensure they remember them after watching the second video. Encourage students not to create an opinion on the topic until they have heard both sides of the argument. Rather, they should focus on their reaction to the ideas shared in the video.
Once both videos have been watched, have students evaluate the arguments used in each in order to compare ideas presented and form their own opinion. Encourage students to discuss their opinions with others in order to fully understand their evaluation.
Questions to ask to further conversation and encourage students to compare ideas include:
- How did the imagery used in each video contribute to the overall argument?
- What were the ideas that swayed them the most?
- How did they come to the conclusion they did?
- What argument presented by the other side came closest to swaying their opinion?
- Is it possible for both sides to be correct?
- Are there any other perspectives that need to be considered before forming an opinion?
In order to create an open space for communication and sharing opinions, be sure to let students know their ideas are important and that negative remarks will not be tolerated. Once students know they are free to share their constructive remarks, the discussion will be sure to lead students to deeper thinking and understanding than they would have achieved on their own.