Classroom Café

This activity provides a fun and informal forum for students to talk about their goals and hopes for the future as well as their expectations for their future lives. Sharing in small groups will help set the tone and get creative juices flowing for Part 3 of this activity. 20 minutes leaves you enough time for three questions or so. If you would like your group to discuss additional questions, consider extending the time allotted for this section.

To prepare for this activity

  1. Arrange the classroom so that there are little tables or desk groups for 2-4 students, much like a restaurant or café. 
  2. Choose some questions from the list below, or generate your own, for students to discuss in small groups. Place one question on each table or desk group.
    1. What is your favorite holiday? How does your family celebrate it? How do you think you will celebrate it when you grow up?
    2. What do you think your family will be like when you grow up? Will you have kids? Pets?
    3. Does your family have any traditions? What traditions do you want to start for yourself?
    4. If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go? What would you do there?
    5. Imagine yourself as an old man or an old woman. What do you hope your grandchildren or great-grandchildren will admire you for?
    6. What do you want to do/be when you grow up? Why?
    7. What do you imagine the world will be like when you are 100? How will people get around? Where will kids go to school? How will people communicate?
    8. If you were making a museum of your life, what object would you put in it? What would people who visited the museum learn about you from looking at that object?
  3. You may want to have some snacks or drinks for kids to have at the tables to make it feel more like a café. If you think this will be too distracting for your students, it will be fine without treats.

Activity Plan

  1. When students come into class, have them sit in groups of three at the different tables/desks. Explain to them that at each table there are questions to help them imagine the future and what the world/their lives might be like when they grow up. Every few minutes, the facilitator will announce the beginning of a new round and each student will choose a new table at which to sit.
    1. Be very clear that there will be a time limit for each question and that each student at the table should get a chance to share.
    2. Reinforce the idea that students should try to sit with different people and at a different table each round. You may have to help facilitate this to make sure that students aren’t just staying with their close friends in the class or answering the same question over and over.
  2. Once at the tables, each group should read the question and then each person should get a chance to answer it.
    1. If your students need more guidance you can assign letters to each seat (A, B, C) so that they have an order for sharing.
    2. You can also give a reminder when it is time to let the next person talk in addition to a reminder for when it is time to transition to the next table.
  3. Allow students to rotate until they have been to all or most of the tables.

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Classroom Café." (Viewed on September 18, 2019) <https://jwa.org/node/22153>.

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