Unit 7 completes the arc of skills that students develop throughout the LST High School program. Not only does it help students focus on what traits are attractive in and to them, but it also helps them realize how their affinity for some traits can work against them by leaving them open to persuasion.
Even the most self-confident teenager will have trouble being assertive in certain situations. Those people who know the difference between being assertive and aggressive--and who can use assertiveness without having it spill over into aggression--are likely to experience more success in life.
The three web-based activities associated with Unit 7 are Crossword, Self-Check, and Web Inquiry: "Assertiveness."
Web Inquiry: Students will read "Assertiveness," an information sheet prepared by the Student Health Center at the University of New Mexico. The article makes an important point in distinguishing among assertiveness, aggressiveness, and passivity (non-assertiveness). In this way it provides a nice expansion on the topics in Unit 7. It also offers effective, straightforward techniques for behaving assertively.
Extension: Have students brainstorm words describing how people might feel during and after a conflict. Examples might include: happy, ignored, sad, energized, angry, mean, in control, powerless, strong, grateful, resentful, and so on. As they call out a word, ask students to categorize whether a word reflects passive, assertive, or aggressive behavior. Point out that some words may fit in more than one category, depending on how they are used. For example, "strong" could be either assertive (feeling strong because there is understanding) or aggressive (strongly pushing a point of view).
Alternate: Students could generate these lists in small groups and categorize them.
This article on assertiveness aligns with the following goals of Unit 7 of the LST High School curriculum:
3. The role persuasion plays in personal and relationship health.
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