Determining Opinions About Risk Takers Through Photos and Quotes

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SWBAT explain how authors use quotes and videos to convey the themes of taking risks.

Big Idea

Will you Risk ALL of NOTHING? That is the question!

Lesson Introduction

This unit will expose students to the many connotations that are associated with things, events, and behaviors that people involve themselves in when taking risks. We will start our lesson with defining risks and behaviors individuals take to follow through with risk taking. Then we will look into historical events to analyze the risks taken by people to gain rights for our nation. To begin this lesson, students will explore the multitude of risks by responding to an image then looking at risks in a poem.

Warm-Up: Seeing Risks in a Picture

5 minutes

To begin this lesson, students will think about risks seen through a photo. After viewing this image,  

students are asked about the risk(s) involved in this photo. Students will work on this activity silently in their seats. As students work on the risk photo, they will find that risks can include many factors not seen in the larger images of the print. 

We will end this portion of the lesson by sharing our list of brainstormed ideas aloud. What was concluded by students included

  • Loss of balance
  • Putting trust in unknown
  • Death (by drowning or eaten by alligators) & Injury (by falling)
  • Position of man is unstable
  • Suit could get dirty
  • Don't know what all is below
  • Could be a "role" model providing a stunt that others would want to try 

Station One: Quote Analysis

10 minutes

The purpose of the station activities is to indulge students in ways to classify and think of things involved with risk taking. The first station require students to understand the big themes of risks by analyzing Risking It All quotes. Students will work in groups to read each quote and analyze its meaning. To help with making connections about what's told through various quotes, the Three Way Tie handout will allow students to select the big ideas of three quotes to narrow down to one word that serves as the author's perspective for risk taking.

Here are students working on a 3 way tie and another 3 way tie to understand what is produced during this station. While the 3 way tie is normally done with vocabulary words, it can be used with quotes to establish new meanings and understandings that surface when individuals decide to take risks. Listen to a student presentation on the station activity to hear the impact of the 3 way tie on student learning.

Station Two: Risks in Videos

15 minutes

In this next station, students will come together as a class to view the Risking It ALL power point. As students watch each clip, they will list the risks involved in each movie. Because the risks are obvious for each movie clip, students will list samples of risks in thier notebooks. Instead of sharing this information now, students will use the information in station four to complete a left-side possibility activity in thier notebooks.

As students watch each clip, I sit behind the computer controlling the order and length of each clip shown to students. All clips have been approved by our district for young adolescents to view. The decision behind the first two stations allows students to understand risks through words and then through digital mediums. The next station brings the understanding of risk to an end with its presence in literature.

Station Three: Poem Analysis

10 minutes

In this station, students will read and analyze the poem, Risk Taking is Free. To build a conceptual understanding of the poem, students read the poem twice. During the first read, students highlight cause and effect relationships involved with risking taking from the perspective of the speaker in the poem. In the second read, students box in the word risk to understand the significance of its occurrence in the poem. Watch how a student works  on the poem to understand the comprehension questions that followed the selection.

Station Four: Risks Conclusions

10 minutes

To end this lesson, students will use the left-sided possibility handout to describe how they understood the ideas around risk taking. This is the first time in this lesson that students will take all of their learning processes and experiences from each station to conclude what it means to take risks. The inspiration of the artwork and/or written expression done by students will show what they deem was important in this lesson.