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Debate: First Negative Constructive

Debate: First Negative Constructive

Students create negative points for a debate resolution. An ESL debate lesson practicing how to organize the first negative constructive.

Level:  Advanced

Topic:  Debate

Time:  60 minutes


  • Make one copy of the Handout for each student.
  • Make one copy of the Key for the teacher.
  • Prepare a list of debate topics, one for each group. Or use the debate topics from the Giving Opinions activity.
  • Students need the Handout from the activity, Debate: Refuting an Argument.



Ask the students to work in groups of three to five.


Give each student the First Negative Constructive Handout.


Ask students to read the Handout and do the task in their groups. Students should use the Refutation Handout to practice the Refutation portion.


Check the answers together as a class (answers available on the Key).

Resolution: the topic or opinion of the debate

Introduction: introduces the debate with the resolution

Conclusion: similar to the introduction, but language is in the past tense

Refutation: the counter-argument to the affirmative points

Transition: links the refutation to the negative points

Negative points: the reasons you disagree with the opinion or topic


Give each group a different resolution. Their task is to create negative points for the resolution. Then, organize the information similar to the Handout (without the Refutation or Transition portion).


Ask the first group to go to the front of the classroom and present their First Negative Constructive.


Ask the audience to listen and identify the negative points.


Continue with each group until all the groups have had a chance to present.


It’s best to do this activity after Debate: Refuting an Argument.

Printable Worksheets



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