Teaching with Digital Dilemmas

Teaching using dilemmas can help students gain previously unseen perspectives, engage them in fruitful discussions and teach them a lot about different outlooks -but more importantly to empathise with others.

Photo by Justin Luebke on Unsplash

Recently, I came across these Digital Dilemmas from Project Zero and use one these dilemmas -related to COVID-19 and education, that I thought it was currently relevant and students could easily relate to.

“Social Distance”

This digital dilemma presents an scenario of a group of students that when they found out that their school would be closed for three weeks due to the COVID-19 pandemic, were psyched and proceed to approach this as a holiday while sharing their escapades in social media disregarding any sanitary or preventive measures.

The authors of this digital dilemma design it “to deepen students’ thinking, perspective taking, communication skills, and agency”.

After students read the scenario, they are presented with a series of reflective questions that allow the students to view the scenarios from the various perspectives:

Your perspective

Notice your gut reaction. What do you think?

Their perspectives

Consider the people involved in the dilemma. What do you think each person in the dilemma is thinking and feeling?

After this, we get the students to think of alternative options and a way forward:

3 options

Identify three options for how the situation could be handled.

1 way forward

Pick the option you think is best and write out the message

How to teach with a Dilemma in LAMS?

Using the Project Zero example,

Outline of Activities

1. Introduction (Noticeboard)

2. Your perspective (Q&A):
What do you think?

3. Their perspective (doKu)
What do you think each person in the dilemma is thinking and feeling?
What options does Tali have? Identify three options for how Tali could handle
the situation.

4. Extender discussion (Forum
Should TikTok and other social media sites remove videos like this?
Why or why not?

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For a step by step run of the learning design or to download it and adapt it to your own teaching, take a look at this card:

I’m a Communication Manager and Outreach Officer at LAMS (Learning Designer App).

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