Instructional Move 6: Four Corners

If you have taken part in a Core Task Project training, then you know we typically start with the Four Corners activity. The website www.facinghistory.org does a nice job summarizing the move as follows:

A Four Corners Debate requires students to show their position on a specific statement (strongly agree, agree, disagree, strongly disagree) by standing in a particular corner of the room. This activity elicits the participation of all students by requiring everyone to take a position. By drawing out students’ opinions on a topic they are about to study, it can be a useful warm-up activity. By asking them to apply what they have learned when framing arguments, it can be an effective follow-through activity. Four Corners can also be used as a pre-writing activity to elicit arguments and evidence prior to essay writing.

7th grade teacher Melanie Thomas explains how she uses Four Corners as a means of formative assessment. At minute 2:40 in the video, you can see Thomas use Four Corners with her students.

Maria Worley explains Four Corners here.

The West Virginia Department of Education outlines the approach here and links to several resources.

You can download a Word document of the approach from the Center for Teaching and Learning here.

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One Response to Instructional Move 6: Four Corners

  1. drhelgeson says:

    Four Corners is a great activity! I love using it to help spark discussion during novel units.

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