Four Corners and Anticipation Guides:
Both of these techniques “activate schema” by asking students to react in some way to a series of controversial statements about a topic they are about to study. In Four Corners, students move around the room to show their degree of agreement or disagreement with various statements — about, for instance, the health risks of tanning, or the purpose of college, or dystopian teen literature. An anticipation guide does the same thing, though generally students simply react in writing to a list of statements on a handout. In this warm-up to a lesson on some of the controversies currently raging over school reform, students can use the statements we provide in either of these ways.