Commonwealth Class: live debates guide

Commonwealth Class: St Cedds, debate photograph Send in photographs from your classroom during the live debate

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If you're planning on joining a Commonwealth Class live debate session, this page can help you make the most of your involvement.

The debates are topical global conversations for pupils around the world. The following tips are designed to help you do this, as well as dealing with some of the practical issues of taking part.

  • All you need for a debate is a computer with an internet connection, and some pupils - it doesn't matter how many.
  • Take a quick look at our previous debates to see how they work - examples here and here.
  • Make sure you locate the live debate page before the debate, and show the films provided to your pupils if you can. (The debate page is clearly promoted on the Commonwealth Class homepage in the preceding week.)
  • If you need inspiration, use the debate points (located at the top of the live page) as talking points.
  • Once the debate begins, send the opinions and comments of your pupils to commonwealthclass@bbc.co.uk, and we'll post them on the live page - keep an eye out for them!
  • During the debate, encourage your pupils to think about what others are saying. Do they agree? Disagree? Have a counter-point or follow-up? Email it to us.
  • If you can't make the set debate time, send us your opinions beforehand and we'll use them during the debate.
  • And most importantly - don't be shy!
  • Please remember to always include the name and location of your school in the subject heading of any live debate emails.

Consent form

  • Send us photos from your classroom so we can post them during the debate - pupils love seeing themselves online and it fosters enthusiasm.

Consent form (word)

Consent form (pdf)

Still have questions? Email commonwealthclass@bbc.co.uk and we'll do our best to help.

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Get involved

  • Image copyright Chris GraysonSign up

    Join Commonwealth Class and contribute to our monthly debates


  • Commonwealth Class - Assembly packsEducation pack

    Download your Commonwealth Class education pack


  • cclsComing up

    For more information about upcoming debates


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