Dear Abby and Me -- Sexual Choices is a selection of columns about people’s problems related to the consequence of a series of sexual choices. I use these columns as an opening (Essential Question) to start the class, get the students thinking on topic and segue into the day’s lesson. For each column, I’ve provided a series of questions designed around decision making, problem solving, how does this affect their health, their relationships, etc. (see Goals or Good Intentions Unit)
Reasons why the Dear Abby column engages the students:
• To a teenager what could be more interesting than other people’s drama? The students can relate to the people’s messes; they see the same things in their neighborhood or on TV. The students have an opinion and will write about the right/wrong thing to do, the consequences and they love giving advice. In short, if they know they will be heard they will write.
• Students observe the pattern where people’s personal choices lead to a predictable unpleasant destination and how that affects their relationships, their future and their finances.
Great resource for teacher because:
Writing is a quiet voice; I have found that some of the most thoughtful and insightful students are the very ones who rarely talk in class. The short writing activities we do with the columns identify those students. I call on these students because they provide a depth to the conversation that my extroverted students don’t.
Students will learn the process of decision making.
Students will do this by identifying the problem, create and evaluate the outcome of each option, choose the best option, then formulate appropriate I-messages.
Students will be assessed by quality of work on worksheet.
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