Deer Park ES Students Learn About Persuasion Via Advertising Tactics
Fourth grade students in Lindsay Gross’s class at Deer Park Elementary are learning to be persuasive by examining advertising tactics. Using cereal box advertising and technology, Gross employed project-based learning to teach her students about persuasion in reading and writing. Students learned to recognize opinions and beliefs when they read advertising and analyze how a reader thinks, feels, and acts as a result of well-crafted, persuasive writing. To kick off the unit, Gross used a PBS Kids website activity called, “Don’t Buy It: Get Media Smart,” where students created their own cereal boxes based on colors, characters, and word choices, then determined how enticing they are. For example, the color red makes people feel powerful, yellow emotes cheerfulness, and blue creates a calming effect. In addition, the site explains that professional athletes are the best method for selling cereal in general; superheroes attract younger kids; and bugs or worms are rarely found on cereal boxes for obvious reasons. Students recorded their findings and information on a program called Padlet, where they can interact with their results. To complete the unit, students will read persuasive articles and analyze them based on what they have learned, then write their own persuasive compositions. Contact news liaison Becky Hawryluk at firstname.lastname@example.org.