Lions, Tigers, and Slugs? Oh, My!
- Grades: 6–8
- Unit Plan:
- Interpret the connotative power of words.
- Demonstrate knowledge and control of the connotative power of words.
- Create a visual presentation to illustrate word power.
- Team Names Connotation Activities (PDF)
- Poster board or paper
- Art supplies
- Class set of dictionaries
Set Up and Prepare
- Make a class set of the Team Names Connotation Activities (PDF)
- Gather art supplies
- Recreate the list of team names used in Lesson One on the blackboard, whiteboard, or overhead
Review the meaning of denotation and connotation. Engage students in a discussion recalling the words previously analyzed. Ask for volunteers to offer any new words to discuss.
Direct the class to review the list of team names on the board and to recall the positive connotations associated with the names.
Introduce the concept of negative connotations. Review the feelings associated with the word ‘gray.' These were unpleasant connotations.
Inform the students that not all team names evoke positive connotations. Share the following list with the class, and discuss the connotations of each:
Ask for students to volunteer names they feel are inappropriate for an athletic team.
Distribute the copies of Sports Team Names Connotation Activities (PDF).
Assign partners, or let students select their own.
Review the hand-out directions with the class. Set a time limit to complete the activities.
Following Lesson Three, students will present all work to the class.
Supporting All Learners
Students interested in the business of naming can investigate the Igor Web site. Igor is a branding and naming corporation that has a dynamic listing of what an effective name can mean to a company.
Parent feedback to the created team names can also be recorded on the presentation posters.
- Review the differences between denotation and connotation.
- Discuss positive vs. negative connotations.
- Activity One - Work with a partner to discuss, analyze, and record connotations of fictitious athletic team names.
- Activity Two - Work with a partner to brainstorm a list of team names, recording the human reaction to the connotation of each.
- Activity Three - Create a team name and a poster to present the name to the class.
- Was additional direction needed for the partners to complete their activities?
- Were more examples needed to establish understanding?
- Did students seem to enjoy the project while gaining knowledge of word power?
Point value should be awarded to the teams based on the following criteria:
1/3 - Using time in class to their benefit
1/3 - Thoroughness and completion of all components of the activities.
1/3 - Creativity, neatness, and oral presentation