Writing Prompts and Discussion Topics on the Subject of Personal Power
Here are some ways that people try to get what they want:
- Being pleasing
- Tricking or outsmarting
- Overpowering or forcing
- Talking it out
- Giving up
Think about a person you know well who is between ages 3 and 5, 10 and 12, or 17 and 19. This can be a real person or an imaginary person. You can read Bullying for more information to help you answer the following questions.
Describe a real or made-up situation in which your person was trying to get his own way about something. Why do you think your person used that way of dealing with this situation? Did it seem to work well? What is your opinion about why it did or did not work?
What advice would you give your person about the best ways to get what he or she wants in the future? Explain your reasons for your advice.
Imagine that a parent asks you about how to teach a child about the 10 ways of behaving listed above. What would you tell the parent? Can they expect to see their children try them all? How can the parent help them decide which ways they should continue to use as they grow into healthy, responsible adults?
(Additional student activities on the topic of bullying can be found at Bullying – Teacher’s Corner.)
Teachers, you can use this blog in classrooms. Here are two ideas about how.
- For middle or high school parenting or child development courses:
- Use the blog for discussion topics
- Require students to research the topics and agree or disagree with what the blog is suggesting.
2. For all courses, especially English Language Arts:
- Use the blog for writing prompts for paragraphs, theme papers, journal entries, class starters, etc. Have students read the blog and respond to:
- Do you agree with what is being said about kids? Do kids really act, think or feel that way?
- Do you agree with what is being said about parents, grandparents, teachers and child caregivers? Do or should they act, think or feel that way?
- What would be your advice on this topic?
- What was left out of this article?
- If you were a parent, would you use any of this information? How?
Why can this blog be a useful teaching tool?
- Students that see connections between their coursework and their lives do better in school.
- Most students will either be parents one day or have children in their lives that they care about, so the topical information can help them build their knowledge about children and parenting and develop a positive image of the type of parenting they want to do.
- The new core literacy standards adopted by most states call for frequent writing in all courses.
- Newly developed end-of-course assessments to be used by many states will require that students demonstrate that they can think critically. These prompts help students practice critical thinking.
- Newly developed end-of-course assessments to be used by many states will require that students demonstrate that they can analyze what they read. These prompts help students practice analysis.