This week we have been working on persuasive writing and speaking skills. Some of the picture books I use are explained below.
I read to my students are Earrings! by Judith Voirst. This is a cute book written in which a young girl tries to convince her parents to let her get her ears pierce. I read it to the students and we talk about good persuasive techniques that the girl used, and what she should have done to let her parents pierce her ears.
We also read Hey Little Ant by Phillip Hoose . This is a great book about a boy who just before he is about the squish an ant, the ant talks to him! The story proceed with the ant and the kid talking and the ant trying to get the kid to not squish him. The neat thing about this book is that on the last page, the author leaves the end of the story up to the reader! I have my kids write persuasively to convince the kid to either save the ant or squish it. I use this as a great warm up to writing persuasively.
Another picture book that you can have students write persuasively is Old Henry.
I talked about this book in an older post ( to see that click here). The gist of the book is that, Henry leaves his house because he was grumpy to the neighbors and he doesn’t keep it clean enough for the neighborhood. At the end, Henry writes a letter back to the neighborhood to ask if he can come back to his house. I have had students write back to Old Henry from the town persuading him to come back, or stay away.
My student’s favorite activity we do with persuasion is I have them create a product and then create a persuasive commercial to sell it using two of the techniques we study in class. I video tape the commercials and then we spend a class period watching them and picking out the persuasive techniques. They love coming up with a new product and then keeping their commercial a surprise until the class sees them.