“Justify it”

You can use this as a starter activity. You need to provide a conclusion for the pupils and they must provide their reasoning behind it. (It’s better to do this mid-way into a topic.)
Provide the students with a statement, such as “A scanning electron microscope is more useful than a light microscope”, “Ancient Egypt was a good place to live”, or a statement in another language which the pupils could justify etc.

The pupils need to create justifications for the statement by developing an argument(s), based on reasoning, evidence and examples (if possible).

Ask pupils to share their justifications in their groups and they could then use these to develop a persuasive argument for the topic you are studying, or use them to share knowledge and ideas on a topic. If you do this with two opposing statements, you could have the starting point for a debate.

This method allows the pupils to revisit prior learning, but also develop their skills of reasoning.