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Discussion Topics to Debate With Your Child!

A great way to develop your child's critical thinking skills at home is by initiating thoughtful discussions. To help with this, we have compiled a list of relevant, interesting and age-appropriate discussion topics for your next dinner table debate...

Simply take one of the following statements and encourage your child to agree or disagree with it. Push them to fully explain their point of view and try offering counter-arguments to challenge them. This works even better if you can get the whole family involved and turn it into a full debate!

Use these discussion topics as some inspiration...

Ages 5-7:
  • Books are better than films
  • Online school is better than in person school
  • Zoos should be banned
  • Junk food should be banned
  • Cars in cities should be banned
  • Children should be allowed to choose what they learn at school
  • Everyone should own a pet
  • Everyone should be vegetarian
  • It is better to be an adult than a child
  • Children should be allowed to choose their own bedtime
  • School uniform should be banned
  • Everyone should learn to play a musical instrument
  • All children should have chores to do

Ages 8-11:
  • Students should be paid for good exam results in schools
  • It is legitimate to break the law in order to protect the environment
  • Junk food advertising should be banned
  • Businesses have the biggest responsibility to tackle childhood obesity
  • We should stop funding space exploration
  • Space tourism should be banned
  • Social media should be banned for under 16s
  • Stay at home parents should be paid a salary
  • There should be an Olympic Games for children
  • Animal testing should be banned
  • Child actors should be banned
  • All toys related to war should be banned
  • All students should have a mobile phone
  • All sports involving animals should be banned
  • Teachers should be replaced with computers
  • Museums should be free
  • There should be a universal language 

Ages 12-16:
  • University should be free
  • Private schools should be banned
  • Vaccinations should be made compulsory
  • The voting age should be lowered to 16
  • Single-sex schools should be abolished
  • Protests are an effective way to bring about change
  • Only violent criminals should be imprisoned
  • Major sporting events should not be held in countries with ongoing human rights violations
  • Footballers salaries should be capped
  • Human cloning should be illegal
  • Business owners have greater responsibility for protecting the environment than the general public
  • Cosmetic surgery should be banned
  • Children should be required to look after their parents in their old age 
  • Boxing should be banned
  • Vaccinations should be made compulsory
  • Only those who pass a political awareness test should be allowed to vote
  • Organ donations should be compulsory
  • Animal testing should be banned
  • Social media does more harm than good

If your child has done debating before, they might be more familiar with the term 'motion' rather than discussion topic. 

A motion simply refers to a topic of debate. All of the above could be debate motions, although they would be phrased slightly differently in this context. 

To turn any of the above discussion topics into a motion, you would simply add any of the following to the beginning of the statement: 

  • 'This House believes...', 
  • 'This House would...' 
  • 'This House regrets...'

This phrasing is used globally by governments during political debates. 
In the UK, it literally refers to the place the debate is taking place, the Houses of Parliament!