Subject: ELA (English Language Arts), SEL (Social-Emotional Learning)
Lesson Length: 45 mins
Topic: Healthy Relationships
Standards / Framework:
Brief Description: Gaslighting is a term used to describe a particular kind of emotional abuse. It's the act of manipulating someone into questioning the validity of their own perceptions, thoughts and memories. Introduce students to this serious problem often experienced in personal relationships and by means of public figures.
Know Before You Start: It is helpful for students to be familiar with the term gaslighting.
Hook: Ask students to explain what is meant by "gaslighting." Show the poster from the film, Gaslight and explain that the term gaslighting originated with the 1938 British play, Gas Light, which was later produced as the 1944 film Gaslight.
Activity: Have students create a three-panel comic describing a moment when they were inappropriately pressured to feel unable to trust themselves.
- How or when did you realize what was really going on?
- How did the perpetrator benefit from your confusion?
- What important lessons did you learn from your experience?
Closure: Ask students to share things they might do if they feel someone is gaslighting them. Have them share their comic with a peer, or showcase finished comics in a Gallery Walk.
- Allow students to use the speech-to-text feature.
- Provide a list of phrases someone who is gaslighting might say.