Objective: To examine the role of vocalics in shaping meanings.
- Working in pairs or small groups, have students take turns saying the messages below out loud as they attempt to convey one of the five attitudes of their choosing.
- Group members should try to interpret the attitude being conveyed.
- Debrief the students along the following lines:
- Were some emotions easier to convey than others? Why?
- Were some emotions easier to interpret than others? Why?
- Did some emotions seem similar? Which ones? What does this tell you about the ambiguity of nonverbal messages?
- What can you infer is the impact of vocalics on meanings?
Matter-of-factly 1. “Can you go to the store for me?”
Suspiciously 2. “I finished class early.”
Amorously 3. “I read your e-mail.”
Angrily 4. “Are you going to have your tires rotated?”
Happily 5. “Can you come by my office after lunch?”
Source: For more activities and resources, check out the Instructor's Manual for Reflect and Relate, 5th Edition, by Steven McCornack and Kelly Morrison.