Perspective Taking

Created by Lindsay Price

Perspective taking is the ability to understand a situation from another person’s perspective or point of view: What are they thinking? What are they feeling? How does their background influence their perspective? Perspective taking allows students to develop self-awareness, to recognize differences, to understand an opposing point of view, to assess nonverbal language, and more.
In this unit, students will practice perspective taking as they:
• Assess their own perspective.
• Demonstrate understanding of the perspective of others in specific situations.
• Analyze characters in a text.

The overview lays out the structure of the unit, along with time management and assessment suggestions.
1: Introduction to Perspective Taking
The best way to introduce a concept is through activities. Students will participate in activities that ask them to make choices and observe the choices of others. They will be introduced to the definition of perspective taking and apply that definition through discussion and a theatrical moment group work activity.
2: Nonverbal Communication
In this lesson, students will explore nonverbal communication. How do students determine what others are thinking and feeling? Can they read body language and other forms of nonverbal communication? When they look at a photo can they identify what someone is thinking?
3: Focusing on Others
In this lesson, students will practice identifying the perspective of others. They will think about all the elements that go into someone’s perspective (e.g., background, experience, traditions, preferences, circumstances).
4: Perspective Taking and Characters
In this lesson, students will analyze characters, identify their perspectives, and demonstrate perspective taking by understanding their points of view.
5: Final Project
For this project, students will create a scene in groups in which everyone is given a specific perspective. Each student must present a character from their provided perspective.

Standards Addressed

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