One use of writing is to persuade readers to adopt a particular course of action or way of thinking, and there are many tools an author can use to achieve this. This collection of activity sheets will give your students practice in classifying and using the different types of Persuasive Language. Please Note: While answer keys have been provided for each activity sheet for instructors, in some cases, your students’ answers will vary.
Fun Fact: The art of Persuasive Language and speaking, known as rhetoric, has been formally taught since 600 BC! It began in Ancient Greece with the Sophists.
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The passage below is from the speech given by John F. Kennedy at his inauguration in 1961. Read the passage. Then, on the back of this page, Find an example of the following persuasive techniques: 1. Anaphora 2. Credibility 3. Figurative Language
A lead (attention getter) for an argument or an essay can take different forms: a. anecdote - tell a short story (1 - 4 sentences) related to your topic. b. question - ask a question that pushes the reader towards your position. c. surprise - lead with an unbelievable fact that will make readers want to learn more.
For each of the following sentences, write your own sentence using persuasive language techniques. Use a different technique for each sentence, and indicate the technique you used by writing it on the line.
Match each advertising slogan with the kind of persuasive technique being used. Write the name of the technique on the line.
What are Persuasive Language Techniques?
Imagine you are sitting in a classroom, and there is a speaker in front of you. You are listening to them speak with passion about a topic. Enough to make you want to agree with them, and you do! That is the magic of using persuasive language.
Persuasive writing helps to emphasize an opinion while targeting the reader's emotions. This is done to convince readers of the ideas of the writer and requires a presentation of well-researched points to make the argument convincing.
But, how is a piece of persuasive writing written? Here's how.
Know the Difference
It is important to know the difference between persuasive and argumentative writing.
Argumentative writing shares both sides of the story to conclude which one is better. But, a persuasive piece of writing only focuses on one to negate the other.
It is easier to understand this through their classification. While argumentative writing is usually done in the form of formal essays, persuasive language is used in the world of marketing.
That is right, every commercial you see is a form of persuasive writing!
Know Your Audience
It is important to know what to say to the right audience.
Once you know what age group and mindset you are targeting, being persuasive gets easier. This will help you to make your points clearer and more suitable.
Add a Hook
Grab your reader's attention!
If you are trying to persuade someone, you need all their attention. This helps them to register your idea well without any mental diversions. And the best way to do that is by adding an exciting hook to your text. For example, you could start with an emotionally moving story. Anything that would keep them reading.
Do Your Research
Even though you are presenting one side of the story, it is essential to know about the other. That is how your points will be more compelling. You need to know the weak points of the counter story so that you can make your case stronger.
So, do not forget to research!
Add Empathy and Rhetorical Questions
If your reader believes that you understand them, they will agree with you more. It is basic human nature. And exactly how empathy works. So, it is a good idea to keep an empathetic tone in your writing to let the reader know that you understand.
Along with that, a few rhetorical questions need to be added. These help to pass along an obvious point to the reader. It also emphasizes a single point that the reader already knows. Reinforcement!
Emphasize the End
Repeat your main point and make sure that it is as persuasive as it can be, especially by the end. This helps to reiterate your opinion to the reader for a lasting effect.
Persuasive writing is an art that talks to others about your opinions. All to make them agree as well.