In this lesson, students prepare a persuasive speech in which they demonstrate that one person (or small group) can make a difference in making the world a better place or taking action for the common good.
Three or Four Fifty-Minute Class Periods
The learner will:
Read aloud the anecdote adapted from The Star Thrower by Loren Eisley. This piece illustrates that one person can make a difference. Go to http://www.lessonsforhope.org/student/Unit3/ca_activity1.asp
- Discuss the students' responses to the story about the boy throwing the starfish back into the ocean because he could make a difference to "one." Review the reasons that people take action for the common good (as discussed in Lesson One). Discuss the students' feelings about their ability to make a difference in the world. Guide the students to start thinking about simple ways they can share time, talent, or treasure to take action for the common good.
- Tell the students that they will make a short speech about how an individual (or small group) can make a difference. Students may work alone or with a small group. If they work in groups, each student must take an equal role in the group project. Students should present an oral speech and create and display a neat and appropriate visual aid.
- Allow one or two class periods for students to prepare their speeches.
- On the determined day, students present their speeches to the class. Students should listen carefully to all the speeches and write a paragraph response to each presentation other than their own. The response paragraphs should be labeled with the presenters' names.
- At the end of all the presentations, students reflect in writing about whether an individual can "make a difference." The two-paragraph response should summarize the points made in the presentations.
Use philanthropy as a topic for current-event study. Ask students to peruse recent newspapers for articles demonstrating that individuals or groups can make a difference.
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