Sometimes We Find Lessons in the Strangest Places

I spotted this flyer while I was waiting for my Pumpkin Latte yesterday morning.  I couldn’t stop staring at it.  It seemed so…. I couldn’t even come up with a word.  So, I casually pulled out my phone and snapped a photograph of it.

I decided to start my morning by showing it on the projector to see what the students had to say about it.  I asked them to turn and talk  while they were waiting for me to wrap up attendance.  They had a lot to say!  I thought it would be nice to capture their thinking and talk about some of the specific elements of the flyerso I quickly printed the photo out and taped it to a piece of chart paper.

My students had a wide variety of thoughts from judgement about the quality of the flyer to making inferences about the person based on the way that they had presented themselves.  Most of their initial comments were judgmental.  (So was my thinking!)  But, I challenged them and asked them to think deeper, to have some compassion.  They discussed that perhaps the person didn’t have access to a computer or that maybe their writing skills weren’t that good but they were excellent dog sitters.  However, one student pretty much summed it up when she said,

“This person might be an excellent dog sitter but because of the way they have presented themselves they probably won’t get very much business.”

That’s a lot of lesson for a Monday morning!  There’s a lot of lesson in this image.

  • We have to be discriminating consumers.
  • How we present ourselves influences people opinions.
  • That sometimes we need to look beyond what is there to try and see the truth of a situation.

I can see this being a powerful reminder to students during the editing and publishing stages of writing and how we present our writing is an essential piece to connecting with our audience.  Here’s the chart I created during our discussion.  I recorded their words, exactly as they said them.

This entry was posted in Interesting, visual literacy, Writer's Workshop and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

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