Authentic Lessons for 21st Century Learning

Fold the Line

K20 Center | Published: September 16th, 2020 by K20 Center


Cover Image

Fold the Line

This strategy pairs students of opposing views or opposite levels of understanding together so they can discuss a prompt.

Fold the Line


Students line up according to how much they agree with a statement. They discuss their opinions with classmates near them (who should share a similar opinion), and then they "fold the line," partnering up with a student who shares an opinion opposite their own to debate their stances. A variation of this method has students line up according to the degree of familiarity with a topic. When the line is folded, topic "experts" are paired with students who are unfamiliar with the topic and could use help understanding it.


  1. Provide students with a prompt.

  2. Students line themselves up according to how much they agree with the prompt. Students who completely agree with the prompt will stand at one end, and students who disagree will stand at the other.

  3. Students discuss the prompt with nearby classmates who should share a similar opinion to their own, which should help them clarify their stance.

  4. After a brief discussion, ask students to "fold the line." To fold the line, have the student at the end of the line walk toward the front of the line to face the student there. The rest of the line follows the leader, pairing up with the next classmate in line, so when they stop moving, each student is standing across from the classmate who was opposite them in line.

  5. Once the line is folded and each student has a partner (or partners if the group is uneven), students debate their stances.

  6. Watch a K20 Video demonstrating the strategy at

K20 Center. Fold the Line Video. K20 Videos.