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Role-play

Role-play is another useful way to create debate by introducing various roles with different perspectives on the issue. Characters might include a scientist, a farmer, conservationist or consumer. It helps students to understand that there are other points of view, that real life issues are complex and that conflict can be resolved. The following scenario uses flooding as the issue for debate.

floodIts not my fault!

A member of your family was going to hospital in an ambulance when it got trapped in a flood.

A special meeting has been called to make sure that it does not happen again. However no-one thinks it's their fault.

Your task is to persuade everyone at the meeting to agree on a plan.

River Engineer

I have been monitoring the river's water levels which have become higher over the last few years. They could stop the situation getting worse if they accepted my plan to deepen and straighten the river.

Conservationist

Areas such as woodlands and wetlands are not just places which encourage wildlife. They are also natural ways of dealing with the causes of flooding.

Scientist

My research has found that there are too many sheep on the hills. The vegetation is being destroyed and the water runs straight off the land.

Farmer

This is my land and I need to make a living. We have been encouraged to keep more sheep on the hills. I would be willing to manage the land differently as long as it was economic.

Home owner

Our new housing estate has to get rid of water from the roofs and drives when it rains. Where else can it go except straight into the river?