Writing a Complaint Letter (Reader Presupposition & Perspective Taking)
Another of my favorite activities because it so clearly illuminates for students the importance of keeping your reader in mind, and more specifically, of thinking about how your wording gives your reader a specific impression of you! This product includes an actual complaint letter, requesting monetary compensation, which was emailed to a hotel chain, along with extensive therapy notes describing how to conduct the activity, and two new situations from which students can write their own letters. When reviewing the letter with students, we discuss how specific phrases, sentences, and semantic content serve to give the reader an impression of the writer as two targeted attributes: honest and reasonable. Students then write their own complaint letters, given a situation, and following the format of the original letter where the first paragraph describes the situation and the second paragraph begins with their request for compensation followed by the reasons why their request should be granted.