by Tovia Smith
We've identified these texts as great options for text pairings based on similar themes, literary devices, topic, or writing style. Supplement your lesson with one or more of these options and challenge students to compare and contrast the texts. To assign a paired text, click on the text to go to its page and click the "Assign Text" button there.
A Teen and A Trolley Reveal Society's Dark Side
- Bethany Brookshire
In 2015, a high school senior named Tiffany Sun conducted a social science experiment and presented her results at the Intel Science Talent Search in Washington, D.C. This article reports on this social science experiment and what it revealed about society's ugly hidden biases.Pair "Putting Good Deeds in Headlines May Be Not So Good" with "A Teen and a Trolly Reveal Society's Dark Side" to spark an in-depth discussion about social norms and how people make decisions about right vs. wrong.
The Limits of Empathy
- David Brooks
In his opinion piece “The Limits of Empathy,” David Brooks discusses what it means to be empathetic and whether or not empathy can influence us to act morally.Pair “Putting Good Deeds In Headlines May Not Be So Good” with “The Limits of Empathy” and ask students to ask students to discuss if they believe that people get too much praise for actions that should not be considered “extraordinary.” Do students believe we should celebrate empathy as an achievement, or is this "moral grade inflation"? Ask students to discuss how David Brooks would respond to the events Tovia Smith describes. Are the individuals Smith describes acting with “sacred codes”?
Five reasons why being kind makes you feel good — according to science
- Jo Cutler, Robin Banerjee
In the informational text, “Five reasons why being kind makes you feel good — according to science” Jo Cutler and Robin Banerjee discuss why being kind to others can improve your mood.Pair “Putting Good Deeds In the Headlines May Not Be So Good” with “Five reasons why being kind makes you feel good — according to science” to provide students with information about what happens when good deeds are glorified in the news. How do people feel when they see stories of people being kind to others? How do students think this compares to the experience one has when they are kind to someone else? What are the negative effects of celebrating people who act morally?