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Perspective - Novice High

Lesson Information

Positive Psychology Learning Outcomes

Students will...

  1. practice how to mindfully shift their perspectives.
  2. can explain a different perspective than their own.

Language Learning Outcomes

Students will...

  1. actively participates in conversations through proper responses.
  2. support ideas and opinions with facts, examples, and reasons.

Materials Needed

Overview

Perspective: a way of thinking about something, especially one which is influenced by the type of person you are or by your experiences. Everyone has a different perspective because we all have different backgrounds and come from different places. 

Definition retrieved from: https://edtechbooks.org/-dAhm 

Activate Background Knowledge

Explain to the students that the following pictures are examples of different perspectives. 

Show the students the following pictures, and have them explain the difference between what each person in the picture sees. 

Retrieved from: https://edtechbooks.org/-bodJ 

Two people look at a number lying flat on its side. From one side it looks like a six. From the other side a nine.

Retrieved from: https://edtechbooks.org/-dwHm

For the next picture, ask the students what the artist thinks about the person in the picture. 

Retrieved from: https://edtechbooks.org/-opA

Activity 1: Listening/Speaking

Tell the students to count how many times the ball is passed in the following video: 

selective attention test

https://youtu.be/vJG698U2Mvo 

Ask the students if they saw the gorilla in the video. 

Explain that sometimes perspective stops you from noticing things, if you are too focused on one thing, you won’t see others. This doesn’t only apply to physical things, but situations as well. For example, if you fail a test, you might struggle to appreciate other positive things such as a nice meal or lovely weather.

Activity 2: Speaking 

Inform the students that there are often multiple ways of seeing things. You might think something is clear, but someone else might be confused about the same thing. 

 The illusion can be seen as two different women, one young and the other old, depending on how you look at the sketch

Retrieved from: https://edtechbooks.org/-Ldn

The dress blueblackwhitegold.jpg

Retrieved from: https://edtechbooks.org/-FqwH

Duck! Rabbit! -- by Amy Krouse Rosenthal

Retrieved from: https://edtechbooks.org/-GKaj

Ask the students what they hear in the following video: 

Yanny or Laurel video: which name do you hear?

https://youtu.be/7X_WvGAhMlQ 

In the following picture, have students stare at the three dots in the middle and then look at a blank white surface. They should see Jesus when they look at a blank white surface. 

Jesus Illusion" iPad Case & Skin by Augilera | Redbubble

Retrieved from: https://edtechbooks.org/-Whtg

After going through these examples, explain that "optical illusions occur because our brain is trying to interpret what we see and make sense of the world around us. Optical illusions simply trick our brains into seeing things that may or may not be real." There is no right and wrong way to see an optical illusion, and although people see different things that don’t mean either are wrong.

Defintion retreived from: https://edtechbooks.org/-MzD

Activity 3: Speaking

Display these four words on the board:

dog, cat, donkey, dragon

Have each student decide which word doesn’t fit with the others. Then, have a few students share which they picked and why.

Possible explanations:
1. The dragon is different because it is the only one that isn’t real
2. The cat is different because it starts with C
3. The donkey is different because it’s the only one that has a y in it.
4. The cat is different because it’s the only one that doesn’t grow taller than about a person’s knee height. 

Then, put the students in groups of 2-4 and give each group an odd one-out sheet. The students will then go through each of the lines and take turns choosing which is different and explain why.

Odd One Out (Opinions).pdf

Activity 4: Listening

Draw a single black dot on the whiteboard and ask the students what they see. Odds are that they will say a black dot or a black dot on a whiteboard. Explain that the black dot represents all the bad things in our life and the white background represents all the good things in our life. 

  • In the exercise, our attention is immediately drawn to the black dot. In life, it is easy to focus just on the bad things, and not realize how much good there is.
  • Have students try ignoring the black dot. Does that make it easier to see the white surrounding? Chances are, it will only make the black dot stick out more. When we can accept that the black dot is there and see it as it is, we can move on to appreciate the white.
  • The black dot will always be there! Some people have bigger or smaller dots, and the size of our own dot changes over time. Suffering is an inevitable part of life, and something we will all experience in different shapes and forms. That said, we can still learn to appreciate the good.

For more on this exercise, refer to The Black Dot Exercise

Activity 5: Speaking 

Have students watch the following video.

Snack Attack

https://youtu.be/38y_1EWIE9I 

After watching, have the students explain to a partner what happened. 

Activity 6: Meditation

This meditation explains why perspective is so important. Have the students watch this meditation video and follow along: 

Headspace | Meditation | Changing Perspective

https://youtu.be/iN6g2mr0p3Q 

Activity 7: Listening and Speaking 

First:

  1. Ask students to recall a difficult situation they experienced with another person (a disagreement, a fight, an offense)
  2. Have them write down their feelings and thoughts about the situation for a couple minutes (for this level, let students know that they can just write words such as angry, disappointed, sad, offended, etc).
  3. When the time is up, ask students to pause and notice how they feel.

Then:

  1. Ask them to re-write the story while thinking about the other person’s thoughts, emotions, and perspective
  2. When the time is up, ask students to pause and notice how they feel.

Finally:

  1. Ask students to reflect on how shifting perspectives can change our feelings. 

Homework

Share what you learned about perspective with a friend in English. 

Follow-Up

Tuesday: 

Ask who they shared what they learned with, and have a few students share in class. 

Wednesday: 

Share this quote with the class, and ask for their thoughts: 

“The way I see it, every life is a pile of good things and bad things. The good things don’t always soften the bad things, but vice versa, the bad things don’t always spoil the good things and make them unimportant.”

- Doctor Who

Thursday: 

Have students discuss what the following quote means to them:

“We can complain because rose bushes have thorns, or rejoice because thorns have roses.”

- Alphonse Carr

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