Both sides did a very nice job of presenting their arguments. The group for smartphones provided the four person adult panel of judges with a handout outlining their reasons. The group against smartphones displayed a poster that they had created. The pro group presented their information like a choral reading. The con group took turns presenting their arguments. It was fun to see students working together so closely, to see them so engaged in their learning, and to see them evaluate a topic that really interested them.
It was a pleasure to see these students process their thinking and to see them realize that those who would pretend to live in a world of absolutes are going to struggle. Life is more like a spreadsheet with multiple columns. Weighing the arguments in the various columns and then making a decision is what day to day living is all about. Thanks, Mel Fisher, for inviting me!