Tell your neighbour

Students ‘tell their neighbour’ as a means of articulating their thoughts.

  • Ask a question, give thinking time, then ask students to tell their neighbour their thoughts.
  • Tell students what the new topic is and then ask them to tell their neighbour everything they know about it.

Why use it (students and staff)

  • To build confidence; 
  • To encourage reflection; To foster a sense of community;  
  • To share different perspectives on the same topic;  
  • To recall knowledge; To ‘test the water’

Possibly more feasible in smaller groups or with a seminar type setting

When to use it

Depending on purpose:  

  • at the beginning as a way to recall existing knowledge 
  • in the middle to clarify points or formulate questions 
  • at the end of the question to check understanding and outstanding points 
  • as a reflective tool 

Digital tools that might be used


  • Break-out rooms (with some preparation)
  • Moodle chat
  • MS Teams meeting
  • Proximity apps

Please build in preparation time if you split students in pairs or small groups as they will need to get to know each other.


  • Moodle Chat
  • MS Teams
  • MoodleForums
  • Moodle workshop 

Speed of set up time 

1 to 30 minutes depending on resources involved and planning the structure.


Depending on resources involved and planning the structure 

  • To define the activity 
  • To prepare questions 
  • To establish an etiquette with the students 

This activity may become easier and more spontaneous if repeated throughout the modules/the sessions 

Other resources