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Motivating a Team - Four Corners

Page history last edited by samuel olson 10 years, 5 months ago

Four Corners: Building Respect for Group Dialogue

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For Four Corners you will need to come up with 3-5 statements for your group to discuss.  We recommend that you give this some serious thought, and come up with statements that relate to the issues you are addressing in your Big Idea.  Make sure your statements are ambiguous enough that participants will have to interpret what is written for themselves.  Here are some possible examples


Print off the statements so that you can pass out a slip of paper to each participant. 


You will need to mark four corners (or areas) of the room with numerals 1-4. 


Action Plan:

Begin by passing out slips of paper to each student with the statements you have come up with, and ask them to respond by writing: 1 = Strongly Disagree, 2 = Disagree, 3 = Agree, or 4 = Strongly Agree. Participants might say that they need an interpretation of the statement in order to make an informed decision.  Do not interpret it for them!  Instead, let them know that everyone will have the opportunity to explain their reasoning after they have responded to the statement and that there is no right or wrong answer. 


After everyone has written their response, have them break into small groups based on their responses.  In their small groups, ask participants to discuss: “How did you interpret and respond to the statement?”  Give them several minutes to discuss, and then ask for a representative from each group to report on their discussion.  After each group has reported on their discussion, open the floor for questions or comments.  After a few minutes of cross-group dialogue, move on to the next statement and repeat the process. 


Throughout this exercise the facilitator should remain objective and unbiased, not joining a particular group, but observing the conversations in order to more effectively guide conversation later.  Emphasize that in small groups each person should have a chance to share why they responded the way they did.



After cycling through your last statement, form a large circle and ask whether anyone noticed similarities between the warm up activity and the group discussion.  You could ask, “Did you feel supported in these conversations?  Did you feel like you were leaning on someone for support at any point in our dialogue?”  If conversation got heated at any point in the discussions you could point this out, without naming anyone, and ask how people felt when the conversation got heated. 


The strength of this final debrief will be partly based on how much you have observed in your group’s interaction throughout the session.  So pay attention to how people are interacting with one another.   


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