Most teachers are well versed in handling directed discussions where students are asked questions and guided to a particular conclusion.  Open ended discussions where there might be no single “right” answer are a very different kind of discussion, and much harder to do well.

Creating a successful open ended discussion takes planning. This free teaching guide will provide you with direction and guidance on how to use this teaching strategy to motivate and stir interest in for any topic in your classes.  Open ended discussions are a great way to start a new unit, too, as a means of learning what background knowledge your students may already possess on a given topic.

A few sample lesson ideas are included in this guide in addition to details about how to create your own.

  • Subject Area: Any
  • Materials Required: Whiteboard or display
  • Time Needed: Can be an entire class period or only an introduction item.