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Discussion task worksheet: Echo Chamber

Invite your students to discuss whether the internet is helpful or harmful in shaping the opinions of its users based on the text “The web’s “echo chamber” leaves us none the wiser” from E2.

Download the worksheet here

Teaching suggestions:

Relevant competency aims:

  • understand, elaborate on and discuss lengthy discourses on general and specialized subjects
  • analyse and assess the role of some English-language media in international society
  • reflect on how cultural differences and dissimilar value systems can affect communication

 

Possible starter/pre-reading activity:

Let students discuss in what ways they believe the internet to be helpful or harmful in general.

The following clip might also serve as a useful introduction:

*Prince Harry and Barack Obama on social media* (“Balkanisation” and “cocooned” may need to be explained)

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-12-27/obama-warns-of-dangers-of-social-media-in-prince-harry-interview/9288942

Preconditions:

Students need to have read Alan Martin’s text “The web’s “echo chamber” leaves us none the wiser” (pages 149-150).

Approximate use of time: 25-30 minutes, depending on class size.

Possible follow-up activities:

As the arguments are clearly split into pro and con arguments, this might form part of a broader debate on internet use, with one half of the class being assigned roles as Internet-sceptics, whilst the other half play the roles of avid supporters of the internet.

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