2—First 1,000 Days: A persuasive digital text
First 1,000 Days is an animated digital text that seeks to inform and persuade the viewer to take action about health issues that affect children around the world. It innovates on the story of Peter Pan, in the fairy tale genre.
First, show the animation without audio and ask students to suggest the purpose of the text. Without music or narrator/voice over, ask students what cues or features were used to bring meaning to the text (images, written graphics).
Next, replay the animation with audio and ask students to identify the purpose of the text — to inform and persuade. Discuss the impact of music and voice over/narrator.
Ask students to identify other examples of texts (written and digital) that seek to persuade viewers (TV and radio advertisements; billboards; advertising on social media).
Brainstorm strategies or language features that these texts use to persuade readers or viewers (an appeal to reason and evidence; an appeal to emotions; an appeal to values; emotive language and images; repetition; imperatives; high modality; upper case and bold fonts; music; direct address of reader; humour; statistics; quote from an expert).
Use the transcript for the video animation and in small groups ask students to identify the language features used to persuade the viewer.
- Identify examples of repetition in the text.
- Identify examples of emotive language in the text. What function or purpose does this play?
- Identify examples of high modality language in the text. What function or purpose does this play?
- Identify examples of first person pronoun use in the text. When is this introduced and what purpose does it play?
- How is written text used in the animation? Which words appear on the screen and why?
- How is music used in the animation? How and when does the music change?
- What does the text ask the reader to do in response? What is the purpose of the text?
- What do children around the world need in the first 1,000 days of life?
Have students read the information text ‘Child mortality drops by 50% since 1990’. While the texts address the same topic of child health around the world, ask students to discuss the different purpose of each text and how the texts differ in their use of language features.