Logical thinking 6 The gray area

Protestors place a symbol between two crosswalks in Washington DC

This class will discuss pros and cons, consider strong statements, and look at the gray area that exists between two extreme points of view.

Warm Up: 

A politician stepped onto the stage, and said, "We need to act now, and you're either going to be for us or you're against us!"

Are those the only options? What other options are there?


Examining the gray area between two extremes is a useful way to discuss complex topics. We can talk about specific points rather than generalize, and we can weigh the pros and cons.

Read the following language to discuss pros and cons. What have you used before?

Let's weigh the pros and cons.
examine the advantages and disadvantages.
take a (close) look at the points in favor and the points against.
(carefully) consider the strengths and weaknesses.

Decide on one issue from the choices below, and try and examine the gray area between two strong points of view:

  1. Age and experience don't matter when it comes to promotions at work. People should be promoted based on capability alone.
  2. We need nuclear power! The more the better!

Next, think of an issue in the news. Consider a strong point of view, and then use this language and strategy to carefully examine the pros and cons.