An English course can give you and your students an opportunity to talk about difficult yet important and current subjects. Recently, I’ve been following the phenomenon of cyberbullying along with the question of digital and internet ethics. I often see very aggressive and insulting comments on Facebook or other websites and I wonder why people are sometimes so cruel to others. In France, we talk about the League of LOL (it’s a group that makes fun of and ridicules people on Twitter in a very mean way). All (or almost all) of us are internet and social media users. Our equality implies there should be mutual respect amongst us in real life and online. In order to talk about all this with my students, I prepared a conversational mind map for talking about cyberbullying.
In case you’ve never used one of these from ESL Expertz before, here’s how…
How to use a conversational mind map:
- Print a mind map and list of words for each pair or group.
- Pairs associate the words from the list with the 5 proposed categories. Don’t forget that it’s not necessary to use all the words. Students can choose those which inspire them the most. Or you could ask them to associate 2 or 3 words per category. Each time they associate a word with a category they must discuss and explain why they have made such and such a connection.
- Next, discuss together by comparing the associations.
- It is also possible to work as a class, we recommend printing an A3 copy of the mind map along with cutting out the words from page 3 of the PDF. Place the cut-out words face down around the mind map. Students take turns drawing a word and associating it with one of the 5 categories. Each time the student must explain why they are making the association.