Tips for Using “This or That” Questions in the Classroom (& Examples!)


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In part one of this series, we shared several pieces of advice from industry leaders about their tips and tricks for running more effective and productive meetings. Now, we’re back with even more advice you won’t want to miss.

As an educator, you’re always looking for new ways to engage your students and get them excited about what you’re teaching. And one of those “new ways” you might not have considered is using this or that questions. Also known as “would you rather” questions, these are a handy tool for teachers to use with their students whether it’s for educating them, entertaining them, or simply breaking the ice among students.

Today, we’ll tell you all about using this or that questions in the classroom no matter your goal for using them!

This or That Questions: The Basics

Let’s start by going over exactly what these questions entail. 

The concept is simple: you present two options to students and have them pick between them. Typically, there isn’t a right or wrong answer—it’s down to opinion or preference.

For example, you could ask your students to pick between pizza or burgers. 

Alternatively, you can use this or that questions like a quiz with two answer options for each question. Think of a multiple choice quiz but with only “this” or “that” to choose from in the responses. 

Using Would You Rather Questions in the Classroom

When it comes to using these questions with students, there are a few different ways of doing so. 

Of course, you could do a classic handwritten quiz style where results need to be calculated or reviewed by hand. But as you know, this isn’t usually the most efficient way of getting things done.

Instead, we encourage you to try live polling with this or that questions. Your students can take part either via SMS message, on a computer, or on a smartphone. They will have access to the quiz or questionnaire and can submit their responses electronically. The best part is, results will be calculated automatically, saving you valuable time. 

Even better, your students can watch the results come in live all together. This is an incredible way to engage and excite them, and it’s especially helpful for breaking the ice among students. Maybe your class will vote between ice cream and candy only to find out there’s a tie between the two options. Then, you can use these results to spark a friendly debate among students.

This or That Quizzes

If you’re using this or that questions for solely academic purposes, they also help you quickly determine subject knowledge or understanding on one or several subjects. You can also create a quick quiz to help your students recall important information for test preparation. 

Here’s what that might look like.

In what year did World War II begin?

  1. A) 1939
  2. B) 1937

Your students can submit their answers, watch results come in live, and you can use this as an opportunity to determine if it’s a topic that needs to be discussed or taught in greater detail. Rather than a longer multiple choice quiz with several answer options, one of the advantages of this or that questions is how quickly they can be created, distributed, and completed.

This or That Question Examples for Students

The options for using this or that questions in the classroom are virtually endless! Maybe you already have some topics in mind, but here are some other ideas to start you off just in case.

Questions for Elementary Students

  • Breakfast or Dinner?
  • Dogs or Cats?
  • Mountains or Beach?
  • Red or Blue?
  • Hot dogs or Pizza?
  • Cookies or Cake?
  • English or Math?
  • The Ability to Fly or the Power to Read Minds?
  • Have Paws for Hands or a Long Fluffy Tail?
  • Mac and Cheese or Spaghetti?
  • Novels or Comics?
  • Video Games or TV?
  • Gym Class or Soccer Practice? 

Questions for High School Students

With older students, you can ask them to choose between two options that might be tricker to answer or require more advanced thinking.

Here are some examples:

  • Would you rather present to a group of 1000 people or in front of the President of the United States?
  • Be a Famous Musician or Be a Famous Athlete?
  • Be Famous or Be Rich?
  • Always Being Hungry or Always Being Tired?
  • No Homework for a Month or an Extra Week of Summer Vacation?
  • Having 100 Dogs for Pets or No Pets at All?
  • Win an Academy Award or Win a Grammy?
  • Lose Your Ability to Taste or Lose Your Ability to Smell?

Swift is Here to Help!

Are you ready to start sharing this or that questions with your students to keep them engaged and excited? We have all of the tools and software you need to get started! You can build live polls on the fly in your classroom and start collecting results right before your eyes! Or, you can create them ahead of time to include them in your lesson plan, and even integrate them into your PowerPoint lessons.

Click here to sign up for Swift Polling for free




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