The purpose of this activity is to encourage students to express their opinions about a range of controversial topics. It’s a great getting to know each other exercise. and works well as a first lesson icebreaker with Intermediate and above students. Students mingle and have conversations and there’s an opportunity to discuss some of the topics at the end of the activity.
Print out the opinion cards (or write your own) and hand each student five random cards. Give students a chance to read their cards while you deal with any questions about meaning and vocabulary.
Tell students that they should hold onto cards that state opinions with which they strongly agree, these are theirs to keep. Meanwhile, they have to try to pass on any opinion cards with which they don’t agree. They do this by mingling with the other students and asking their opinion about the topic expressed on the card. If they find someone who agrees with the opinion then that person takes the card and adds it to the cards they already hold.
When the activity seems to be coming to a natural end, tell students to give you any cards which they haven’t managed to dispose of, and to return to their places.
Now, go through the leftover opinion cards and see if anyone is willing to take any of them. Then go around the class asking students to reveal which opinion cards they are holding and say a few words about why they support this opinion. You can debate any of the topics which will provide plenty of opportunity for language input as the students start to learn more about their classmates.