Western Reserve Public Media

Change My Mind: Overview

Change My Mind is based on the concept that students will be bombarded with persuasive techniques in all aspects of their life. They need to recognize when persuasive techniques are being used and, in turn, how students can use them to try and persuade others. This project is directed at the persuasive writing process. The multimedia kit is keyed to grades 8-10 language arts standards and includes a teacher guide, five videos and a Web site.

The Teacher Guide
The teacher guide is divided into four parts:

  1. Teacher Resource Pages: You can use these pages for your own reference or in the classroom.

  2. Learning Persuasive Techniques: These short student handouts define each persuasive writing technique.

  3. Using Persuasive Techniques: These lesson plans and projects are designed to support your teaching of the persuasive techniques.

  4. Writing Approaches: This section describes two approaches to writing persuasive essays — the logical essay and using a framing metaphor to enhance the meaning.


The Videos
Change My Mind videos loosely follows the format of a late-night talk show. The host acts as a conduit for guests to use their persuasive writing skills and presentation techniques to sway him toward their way of thinking.

Video 1: Appeal to Emotion considers the effects of emotional pleas on the audience. Whether using powerful new images or words in text or speech, appeals to emotion are powerful.

Video 2: Appeal to Logic shows how rational arguments and the use of facts, figures and statistics can help to support one’s position.

Video 3: Appeal to Authority shows how an expert can be used to provide credibility or importance to a product or service. The expert can be real or perceived.

Video 4: Loaded Language deals with the concept of purposely using connotations, or the meanings that words have beyond the dictionary definitions, to persuade or manipulate people’s thinking.

Video 5: Bandwagon shows how the need to be part of the group can be a very convincing tool of persuasion.


The Web
All lesson plans are available online in both PDF format and as regular Web pages at www.WesternReservePublicMedia.org/changemymind. All videos are streamed. Also included on the Web site are games, a hotlist and other information for students and teachers.


Project Coordinator
Maria Mastromatteo, Western Reserve Public Media

Teacher Design Team
Cathy Page Adler, Ravenna City School District

Tami Applegarth, Springfield Local School District

Lori Pyles, Portage County Juvenile Detention Center

Teacher Guide Layout and Design
Paula Kritz, Western Reserve Public Media

Produced by Western Reserve Public Media (WNEO/WEAO, Youngstown/Akron, Ohio)

Executive Producer
Maria Mastromatteo, Western Reserve Public Media

Duilio Mariola, Western Reserve Public Media

Duilio Mariola, Western Reserve Public Media

Larry Chance, Chance Productions

Layout and Design
Paula Kritz, Western Reserve Public Media

This series was funded by the Ohio Legislature through the eTech Ohio Commission.

Copyright©2008, Northeastern Educational Television of Ohio, Inc. All rights reserved.