Friday fun – teaching Year 3’s about persuasion

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This morning I had the great opportunity to be invited to a children’s school to share a presentation with Year 3’s. The class is learning about persuasive writing, and given that I’m in the business of persuasion, I thought I would share some of my thoughts!

I shared with the class the outline of a creative brief – considering who is your audience, what do they currently think or feel, what do you want them to think and feel, and therefore what should you tell your audience? We would call this last element a proposition, but the kids are learning that they need to provide reasons to persuade.

We talked about the best reasons to persuade, and I shared how it’s better “to sell the sizzle, not the steak” – and encouraged the children to use emotive words to evoke feelings -in preference to sharing facts – to build persuasion. I shared with them a case study of M&M’s chocolates (which I was the Marketing Manager for a few years back) that contrasted the persuasion of rational facts vs emotional benefits. This led to the highlight for the kids – me handing each of them a little packet of M&M’s… needless to say they didn’t need any persuading to accept them!

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