Visual space

In this teaching method, students indicate their opinion or preference non-verbally by literally taking a position relative to each other in the virtual or physical space.

Suited for an endless number of topics; from getting an idea of how your students are feeling (tired, energetic) to finding out which philosopher they feel most connected to!

Activity goal
Activate prior knowledge |
Assess |
Get to know each other |
In class
Offline |
< 10 minutes
Group size

Mentimeter, Kahoot, Miro, Zoom

Step 1

Consider which questions you want to ask the students. You can find examples in the Variations, tips & tricks section below. 

Step 2

Produce a slide with the layout of the (virtual) space (eg a line with left ‘for’ and right ‘against’).

Step 3

Explain the different positions in the (virtual) space the students can choose from.   

Step 4

Ask your question and give students time to consider where they want to stand. 

Step 5

After your starting signal, they move to the place they had decided on. 

Step 6

Afterwards, hold a discussion on the choices they made.

  • Variation 1

    The line

    • have students respond by standing on a line that has a scale of 1 to 10 (to measure their level of prior knowledge, opinion about a statement)
    • have students respond by standing on a line that has variable scales for such things as age, length, travel time, average alcohol consumption per week, how tired-energetic they are, etc. 

    Variation 2

    Divide the space into corners or sides for choices A, B, C, D, True/False, Agree/Disagree, etc. An example: You want to know the philosopher with which your students feel the most connection. Divide the virtual or physical space into 4 sections, with each section designating a philosopher and have the students choose.

    Variation 3

    Icebreaker: with which cartoon figure/activity/pronouncement do you identify the most? Sweet or savoury? Outdoors/indoors? Etc.

    Variation 4

    Other shapes can be used with comparable applications including: grid, circle, matrix. Or online using a map with the question, where were you born? Or, where do you want to go on holiday?


  • Please consider the tools and materials mentioned here as suggestions. In many cases it’s possible to use alternative tools. Please turn to the Learning & Innovation team of your faculty (EUR or EMC) first to see which online and offline tools are available and how to apply them. 


    Use masking tape to make a line or another partition on the floor.


    This activity can be used online with e.g. Mentimeter, Kahoot, Miro or use the 'stamp' tool via de Annotate function in Zoom.