Objective: The student will express himself using vocabulary
that is appropriate for the school environment.
Language Arts Standard: Listening and Speaking
• Identify Need
• Introductory Activity: Discussion about lawsuits against
schools and businesses when inappropriate language was allowed
• Define Steps and Sequences of Skill
Consider the types of “Registers.” See “registers”
under basic skills of this web site.
2. Determine the person’s mood.
3. Be aware of your surroundings, i.e. language expectations
are different in different settings.
4. Use language that would not be offensive to different races,
backgrounds or religions.
Remember that students at school have the right to be in an
environment in which vulgarities and profanities are not heard.
(Schools have been heavily fined for not insuring this personal
right on school property.)
• Role Plays not recommended/Classroom Discussion
• Applications: Businesses, i.e. most will not tolerate
the use of offensive language.
• Independent Uses: Situations at school
Teachers: This lesson presents a teaching moment about language
and values. Songs that are popular with middle school students
usually have two versions: one is a radio version that you may
hear if you listen to local stations. The second is the original
CD version. This may very well have sexually explicit language.
Some music is called ganster rap. This music glorifies gang
activities such as drive by shootings, use of drugs, the sharing
of sexual partners. Many middle school students have really
no idea of what the meanings of the words are, such as "smoke
an L with me." Depending on the comfort level of the teacher,
these values conveyed through the music should be discussed
openly. You'll find that the students know each and every word
of the songs, but don't know the underlying meanings. Use the
librettos of CD's to read the lyrics. There are also lyrics
available online. You can reach these through a web search,
although your school district may have a filter blocking your
access to them.