For the last few months the folks here at Facing the Future
worked hard to describe our upcoming full-course text, Exploring Global Issues: Social, Economic, and Environmental Interconnections
. But we’re now less than one month away from the March 21st launch of the student text
, so I’d like to share with you some of the high points of the book in order to give a taste of what this great content looks like. Over the next few weeks I’ll be providing examples of all the high-points we’ve mentioned on this blog, in newsletters
, on fliers, and lots of other places
Today I’ll take you through an example of one of my favorites: Point-Counter Point.
Most chapters conclude with a Point-Counter Point
discussion that highlights a major question associated with the chapter topic. One of the main goals of Exploring Global Issues
is to help students build critical thinking and problem solving skills, and the Point-Counter Point
sections facilitate this by teaching students to appreciate multiple perspectives, or what some call engaging in rhetorical listening. Because most of the issues appearing in this book are controversial, taking into account the many voices speaking about them is critical in teaching students how to analyze them.
Below is the Point-Counter Point section from Chapter 21 of Exploring Global Issues
, which is on Globalization.
I recently observed a 9th grade social studies class that pilot tested Exploring Global Issues
. The teacher asked her students to debate the North American Free Trade Agreement, using the Point-Counter Point
discussion on global free trade as a starting point. Students were intentionally asked to argue for a stance on the issue that the teacher thought they would be less likely to agree with in order to encourage critical and fair thinking. Watching these students learn how to argue, reason, and talk through these issues was an incredible experience.
What kind of lessons can you think of that would encourage healthy debate and develop critical thinking skills?
Until next time (when I’ll share a little about EGI’s Career Profiles!),