This session focuses on the potential to be misunderstood in written and in spoken communications.


  • Life Skills
  • Communication
  • Interpersonal Skills


By the end of this session, participants will be able to:

  • Distinguish between verbal and written communication.
  • Evaluate their personal effectiveness as a communicator.
  • Identify previous miscommunication experiences.


  • Express Yourself activity sheet (one per participant)
  • Pen or pencil


Text in italics should be read aloud to participants. As you engage your post in activities each week, please include comments, discussions, and feedback to the group relating to Character, Leadership, and Ethics. These are important attributes that make a difference in the success of youth in the workplace and in life.



Tell Explorers it is important for them to be able to communicate both verbally and in writing, no matter which style they prefer. Explain that there will be circumstances in school and in their careers where they will not be able to choose how they communicate.


Have Explorers complete the four questions on the Express Yourself activity sheet.


After participants have written their responses to the questions, place them in pairs. Have the partners share and explain their responses.


Gather together as a group and ask the participants to explain where answers were similar and where answers were different. Transition into the closing reflection.


Some sample questions are below. They are designed to help the participants apply what they have learned to their own interests. You are welcome to use these questions or develop your own questions that relate to your post or specific focus area.


Focusing Questions

  • How did the activity go?
  • What did you learn from discussing different ways to express yourself?

Analysis Questions

  • How might you work to ensure that no one misunderstands you?
  • Which is easier to prevent—a misunderstanding in writing or in speaking?
  • How might you use this in your potential career?

Generalization Questions

  • How might you use this skill in life or in college?
  • Why are effective communication skills important to master?
Express Yourself Activity Sheet