The following activities have been used by teacher groups to support learners through speaking and listening.

Children looking at ‘People all over the world’ worked in small groups to list What we know and What we’d like to know in two columns. They presented this back to the class.


Children worked in small groups to note as many ideas as they could in a limited time. All ideas were noted, and each group discussed its notes before reporting back to others.

Mental maps

Children worked alone to draw their perceptions of ‘the world today’. They shared these in pairs, and compared differences.

Personal timelines

Children sat in groups, each briefly recording key events from their own lives along a line on a sheet of paper: their birth on the left, with the line extending through the present into the future. They shared with others in the group: what did they have in common, and what was different?


Small groups were given 9 statements about gender roles on small cards, which they had to arrange in a diamond pattern on which they all agreed. The card they agreed with most was put at the top, and least at the bottom. Each card was discussed in turn.


Making decisions using statements, pictures or objects.

The Development Compass Rose offers a framework for questions about issues or places. It can be used to look at the environmental, social, economic and political dimensions of any place or situation, and to highlight commonalities.

In this example, children were looking at the question Who has the right to own a plant? Children took digital images of plants and worked in small groups, writing questions under each heading. These acted as a starting point for further enquiry.

Children used this question frame to think about the plants they were looking at. By taking a range of questions, it encouraged them to generate ideas about place, space, people and processes.