The following are writing prompts and discussion topics about clear messages and responsibility. See Teaching Responsibility: Give Clear Messages for more information.
Here is a conversation. Mom says, “What time are you going to bed?” Child says, “Why?” Explain what you think happened in this conversation. Why do you think Mom didn’t get a direct answer to her question? Why do you think the child decided to ask why rather than answering the question that was asked?
Do you think most students in your school understand what the school rules are and what the consequences are for breaking them? If yes, do you think that means students will more likely follow those rules? If no, what ideas do you have about how to make them more clear?
People do not always say what they mean. Why do you think that happens?
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.
- 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.