Activity 1: Identify the issue
Brainstorm issues and ideas
Develop a futures wheel and/or concept map to unearth the types of issues you are likely to uncover.
Activity 2: Explore the issue
Develop your ideas through, for example:
Searching local papers and media for ideas
Using DeBono’s six-hat thinking techniques
Documenting your attitudes to the issue
Activity 3: Frame questions and actions
Clarify questions by, for example
Listing and categorising your information
Developing a decision tree
Activity 4: Collect information
Valuable information can be collected by:
Collecting relevant cartoons and photographs
Taking notes from written information
Summarising information presented on relevant television programs
Writing faxes and letters
Contact organisations by Internet
Activity 5: Interpret the information
Consider the following ideas:
Graph or tabulate the information
Consider the motives of the author/s of the information
Apply De Bono's six-hat thinking to determine the orientation of the statements
Check one person's interpretation against that of others
Search for inconsistencies
Check for relevance to the question being investigated
Search for information which supports that found to date
Search for information which presents contrasts to that found to date
Make judgements about how to deal with conflicting information
Consider the values of the author/s of the information, and/or
Re-arrange the information to try to detect new patterns.
Activity 6: Make conclusions from the information
Once the information has been weighed up:
Write a generalisation or series of generalisations based upon the information that has been analysed
Discuss your conclusions with other members of the class and be questioned about them
Investigate the costs and benefits of various solutions proposed by others
Defend your conclusions by reference to the information you have analysed
Consider the consequences of acting in different ways based on the same conclusions, and/or
Present the worst case scenarios and the best case scenarios in a persuasive genre.
Activity 7: Act on the information
The form of action should be related to the information which has been discovered in the course of the investigation. Some appropriate forms of action which could be taken will probably be obvious by this stage, but could include the following:
Developing a plan of action using flow charts, consequence charts, timelines, or other visual tools
Displaying the plan and invite comments
Communicating the conclusions of the project to other members of the class, other classes, community members, members of relevant organisations, politicians
Developing information brochures
Mounting a display in a prominent community setting
Writing a submission for funding to a local body
Writing letters to the editors of newspapers
Holding a public meeting
Developing an audio-tape
Choreographing a dance which makes a social comment.
Activity 8: Reflect on the outcomes
Consider the following ideas:
Check to see if the original questions have been answered.
Discuss what were the main opportunities and obstacles to obtaining information.
Write an account of the project or recapitulate through the development of a flow chart identifying the various strengths and weaknesses.
Complete a diary of the project begun at an earlier stage - written, photographic, video or other.
Check the perceptions of other students about the value of the project, and/or
Reflect on how the project has changed your attitudes.
Activity 9: Identify emerging issues
Following a period of reflection, you could engage in group discussions about how to deal with unresolved questions, and initiate a further investigation.