Beacon Lesson Plan Library

The Breakfast Busters Persuade Others

Scott Hebert
Citrus County Schools


Students will learn how advertisements are used to influence people in making decisions. They will have an opportunity to write a persuasive essay on their favorite breakfast cereal.


The student writes for a variety of occasions, audiences, and purposes (for example, letters to persuade or request, humorous or suspenseful stories to entertain, instructions to inform).


-Video clip of cereal commercial from television
-Persusasive essay written on overhead
-Chart paper
-Checklist of effective elements


1. Divide the class into groups of three to four students.
2. Have enough chart paper and markers for each group of students.
3. Prepare a video clip of a cereal commercial from the television.
4. Prepare three sample essays.
5. Get markers.
6. Prepare a checklist of effective elements on chart paper.
7. Prepare copies of two sample essays for small groups.
8. Prepare a copy of the essay for the overhead projector.


1. Show video clip of cereal commercial from television and discuss with the class.

2. Discuss elements used in advertising. (Write on chart paper.)
a. Emotional Appeal
b. Rational Appeal
c. Offer a Change

3. Show example of a persuasive essay on overhead.

4. Discuss and list the elements that the students notice in the example. You may want to list their responses on a piece of chart paper.

5. Explain the format for writing a Persuasive Essay. (Write on chart paper.)
a. Introductory Paragraph
b. Two Paragraphs including justification
c. Concluding paragraph that redefines topic and lists compelling evidence

6. Put students in small groups to work on the next part of the activity.

7. Hand out the sample essays for students to evaluate. They should look for effective elements. Students will need to use a checklist to look for the required elements.

8. Have students work in small groups to write a persuasive essay about eating a snack before doing homework after school. Be sure to direct the students to include all the effective elements in writing a persuasive essay. The students will also need to refer to the elements in advertising as they write this essay.

9. Circulate and assist students during the small group work time.

10. Have groups write their essays on chart paper and post around the classroom.

11. Have students write an advertisement to persuade the reader to purchase his or her favorite cereal.

12. Evaluate essays. (See Assessment and Attached File.)


The students will write a persuasive essay for their favorite brand of cereal. An introductory paragraph followed by two supporting paragraphs and a concluding paragraph should be included. Students should present a detailed description of the product along with a justification for purchasing the product. They should also include specific examples and evidence to support their product. Explanations should include specific reasons why someone would want to purchase this brand of cereal. A concluding paragraph should clearly redefine the topic and list compelling evidence.


Modify this assignment by limiting the justification paragraphs from two to one. You can also have students provide oral presentations versus a written article. Students may also want to create a poster to help persuade the audience to purchase their brand of cereal.

Web Links

Web supplement for The Breakfast Busters Persuade Others
The Five Paragraph Essay

Attached Files

A Checklist of Effective Elements.     File Extension: pdf

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