- Choose a central text.
- After students read the text as a class, in small groups or independently, provide students with a value judgment connected to the text.
- Designate a “value line” in the classroom. Assign one side for those who agree strongly, the other for those who disagree strongly, and a space in the middle for those whose opinions lie in between.
- Ask students to take a stand relative to the value line at the count of three.
- Invite students to partner with someone who disagrees with their stance and discuss their positions with these questions:
- Why do you think that?
- How would you explain that?
- What’s the evidence to support that?
- How can you persuade me to think that too?
- What would you have done in that situation?
- After individual student discussions, debrief the value judgment as a whole class.
- Revisit the central text.
- Ask students to take a stand again, using the same statement. Some students may return to the same location on the value line. Some may change position.
- Invite students to select a different partner and talk about why they chose the stance they did.
- Debrief the process again with the whole group, focusing on reasons for keeping or changing position.
- Have students quick write or draw about the process.
English language learners
Connection to anti-bias education
In an anti-bias classroom, each student must feel valued, accepted and validated. Value Line supports rich discussions about divergent opinion and experiences. It enhances understanding and allows students to adjust their thinking in response to additional information. This strategy illustrates how diversity enriches a team.