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Week Three Day Two – My milk is better! 50 Minute Period

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Week Three Day Two – My milk is better!

50 Minute Period

This lesson will ask students to take a side on an innocuous issue and argue it. Students will identify different types of arguments they used and discuss which kinds of arguments are more effective.

Desired Outcomes:

Students will identify different kinds of arguments (pathos and logos).

Students will discuss which kind of argument is (1) more effective and (2) more reliable.

Students will discuss how each kind of persuasion they come into contact with and identify their types.


Two large pieces of poster paper per class that is cut into the shape of milk cartons. One carton is chocolate milk and one is plain. Make sure that there is plenty of space on the ‘cartons’ to on which to write. Milk can be substituted with many things like the way you like your pizza cut, Coke or Pepsi, sports or academics, and so on. The teacher should also have a prepared overhead with brief explanations of pathos (emotion), ethos (speaker), and logos (logic).

Attention Getter, 5 minutes:

Greet the students as they come into the room. Tell them to set their stuff down and pick a side of the room to side on. Don’t let anyone take their seat. One side of the room will have and large Chocolate Milk sign, and the other side will have a Plain Milk sign.


Tell the class that the Dairy Farmers of America needed advice on whether to produce more chocolate or more plain milk.

The class is to act as a focus group that is to decide which milk was needed more production.
Once the class is all to their sides, ask the two main groups to break into smaller groups of three to four. Each smaller group is to come up with as many reasons as possibly why their milk is better. This should take about 5 minutes. Ask the small groups to reconvene and put their reasons on the poster. (5 minutes) The larger groups will then have some time to generate an argument in defense of their milk. (10 Minutes) The groups will be told to stop that activity after a while and try to think of what the other group may be thinking, and come up with counter arguments. (5 minutes)
Put the overhead up and briefly describe pathos and logos, tell them that “we will get to ethos later”. Ask the students to underline any arguments that they have that fall under pathos and circle any that fall under ethos. (5 minutes)
The class should be given some time to argue their sides and respond to statements. (20 minutes)

Ask each student to do a journal entry as homework. The entry should reflect on commercials and what method(s) of persuasion they use. Try to think of specific examples. Are there other times in your daily lives where you come across these methods being targeted at you?

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