Every day, we and our students make decisions. Some are easier than others -- for example, "Should I wear the red shirt or the blue sweater?" Of course, it's the more difficult decisions that we hope to help our students prepare to tackle; the issues at play are often multifaceted and much more nuanced. In teaching critical thinking and argumentation, a host of skills can come into play: analyzing a text, collecting data, identifying problems, thinking critically, supporting claims with evidence, and more. These skills are essential to an informed, intelligent adulthood, where decisions and debates are undoubtedly more frequent and more substantial.
To help prepare your students, we've highlighted 12 tools -- apps, games, and websites -- that can aid them in argumentative and persuasive writing. Quandary and Argument Wars are games that teach students how to gather and evaluate information to make better, more informed decisions. The app Mars Gen One: Argubot Academy engages students in learning the purpose and substance of building a solid argument. Programs such as ThinkCERCA and Drafting Board offer platforms where students can organize ideas and craft solid, supported arguments. At the end of the day, we want students to develop informed opinions, exercise empathy, and communicate clearly, all while learning that the world is not so black and white. These excellent digital tools aim to help them do just that.
What are your favorite tools? Let us know in the comments below!