Quick summary: We have a complex relationship with our mobile phones that is more than screen deep. Mobile phone use and the impact it has had upon society is a contemporary social issue with far-reaching effects on our community’s safety, health and wellbeing. In this lesson, students will become familiar with Ethos – a rhetorical device used to persuade. They will focus on the inclusion of expert opinion and evaluate how effective this technique is in a short clip related to the documentary It’s People Like Us. Students will watch another clip and work in pairs to respond in writing to a set of prompts. The class will then reflect on the change in their understanding of Ethos.
It’s People Like Us is a documentary film created as part of the Transport Accident Commission’s (TAC) Towards Zero road safety strategy. It explores society’s relationship with mobile phones – especially the use of them while driving – and the responsibility that we all have to keep ourselves and each other safe on the roads.
- Students understand the rhetorical device Ethos and how it works to persuade an audience.
- Students understand the impacts of mobile phones on their own lives.
21st century skills:
Australian Curriculum Mapping
Year 9 English
- Interpret, analyse and evaluate how different perspectives of issue, event, situation, individuals or groups are constructed to serve specific purposes in texts (ACELY1742)
Year 10 English
- Evaluate the impact on audiences of different choices in the representation of still and moving images (ACELA1572)
Relevant parts of Year 9 English achievement standards: Students understand how to use a variety of language features to create different levels of meaning.
Relevant parts of Year 10 English achievement standards: Students make presentations and contribute actively to class and group discussions, building on others’ ideas, solving problems, justifying opinions and developing and expanding arguments.
General capabilities: Personal and Social Capability, Critical and Creative Thinking, Literacy.
Topic: Social Issues.
Unit of work: It’s People Like Us – English.
Time required: 90 mins.
Level of teacher scaffolding: Medium – teachers will be required to facilitate active listening and responding in class discussion.
Resources required: Student Worksheets – (printed) one copy per student. Rhetorical Devices factsheet. Device capable of presenting a video to the class. Enough web-enabled devices for one per pair of students.
Related Professional Development: Teach Persuasive Language Using Documentaries
Keywords: rhetoric, persuasion, ethos, expert, It’s People Like Us, mobile phone, society.
Cool Australia’s curriculum team continually reviews and refines our resources to be in line with changes to the Australian Curriculum.