Assumptions can be dangerous
This lesson will focus on how making assumptions can be dangerous. We will be looking through a series of images and video. Students will be encouraged to share their assumptions.
Time Required: 2.5 hours
Reading: 2. Recognize a variety of text forms, text features, and stylistic elements and demonstrate understanding of how they help communicate meaning; specific: 1.5 (Infering) 2.4 (Elements of Style), 3.2 Reading Unfamiliar words
2. Draft and revise their writing, using a variety of informational, literary and graphic forms and stylistic elements appropriate for the purpose and audience:
3. Use editing, proof reading, and publishing skills and strategies, and knowledge of language conventions, to correct errors, refine expression, and present their work effectively. Specific: 1.4 Classifying ideas, 2.1 Form, 2.3 Word Choice
1.Listen in order to understand and respond appropriately in a variety of situations for a variety of purposes, specific: 1.5 Making inferences, 2.4 Appropriate language
1) State a reasonable inference
2) Use evidence from the text and your own ideas to support your inference
3) Use direct quotes whenever possible
4) Explain how your inference helped you understand the text
5) Be clear with your thinking
6) Expand on your inferences by reflecting on each specific text. Think of the texts Big Idea in order to make deep inferences and to show a deep understanding
1.Define ‘assumption’ with the whole class. Record thinking on whiteboard or anchor chart.
2.Definition: Assumptions are something we take for granted or presuppose. Usually it is something we previously learned and do not stop and question. It is part of our belief system. We assume our own personal beliefs to be true and we use our beliefs o interpret the world around us.
3.Share a situation, such as knee jerk reactions. What stereotypes do we come up with in this situation? Get students responses
4.Model to the whole group with situation 1: I hear a scratching noise at my bedroom door. What is the assumption and inference? The assumption is only my cat can make that noise at that door. The inference made can be I infer that my cat is at the door.
5.Model to the whole group situation 2: the Trayvon Martin case. Show the attached video to the students.
6.Afterwards discuss what happened in the video. What was the assumption made? Situation: Trayvon Martin gets shot walking through his neighborhood. Assumption: All black men are dangerous, carry weapons, and partake in illegal activities. The inference: It is night, he is wearing a hoodie, he must be about to commit a crime.
7.Model to class situation 3: You are on a plane waiting for it to take off and there is disagreement between the flight attendant and a Muslim man. The assumption is that all Muslim people are dangerous (based on post 9/11 information). The inference: This man will harm us or highjack airplane.
8.Students will get into groups of 4-5 and will work together to travel through a carousel rotation. At each rotation, they will have to fill out a graphic organizer once they watch a clip, view a photograph, or read a scenario. The graphic organizer will ask them to describe what they see, to make an inference about the scenario, and to share their assumptions. Students will be encouraged to share their assumptions even if they feel they will not be well received by those around them.
9.After each rotation, students will return to their seats and we will talk about some of the assumptions we made and how some of these assumptions can be dangerous.
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