Ethos, Pathos & Logos Lesson Plan

Instructor: Dana Dance-Schissel

Dana teaches social sciences at the college level and English and psychology at the high school level. She has master's degrees in applied, clinical and community psychology.

Boost your instruction on ethos, pathos, and logos with the help of a video lesson and a brief activity. Optional extensions and related lessons are offered for deeper exploration of the topic.

Learning Objectives:

Upon completion of this lesson, students will be able to:

  • define, ethos, pathos, and logos
  • explain the value of ethos, pathos, and logos in speaking and writing
  • identify examples of ethos, pathos, and logos


30 minutes to 1 hour


  • Photocopies of John F. Kennedy's January 20, 1961 Inaugural Address
  • Purple, green, and red colored pencils or markers
  • Tablets, computers, or projector to access lesson

Curriculum Standards


Interpret information presented in diverse media and formats (e.g., visually, quantitatively, orally) and explain how it contributes to a topic, text, or issue under study.


Delineate a speaker's argument and specific claims, distinguishing claims that are supported by reasons and evidence from claims that are not.

Key Vocabulary

  • Ethos
  • Logos
  • Pathos


  • Have students watch the video lesson Ethos, Pathos, and Logos: Importance in Public Speaking in its entirety.
  • Freeze the video at 6:33 to display the terms 'ethos,' 'pathos,' and 'logos' on the screen for the students to see.
  • Pass out the photocopies of President Kennedy's inaugural address (one for each student).
  • Ask students to use their purple pencils/markers to underline examples of Kennedy's use of pathos.
  • Now, have students underline examples of Kennedy's use of logos using the green pencils/markers.
  • Next, students should underline Kennedy's use of ethos with the red pencils/markers.
  • Finish by asking students to complete the quiz associated with the lesson.


  • Ask students if they are for or against parents restricting their child's media use, based on content or screen time. Now ask them to draft an essay using ethos, pathos, and logos to reflect their position on the issue.
  • Ask students to research three famous speeches from history and list examples of ethos, pathos, and logos from each.

Related Lessons

The Art of Persuasion in Public Speaking

Components of the Toulmin Model for Public Speaking: Claim, Data & Warrant

Earning College Credit

Did you know… We have over 200 college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 1,500 colleges and universities. You can test out of the first two years of college and save thousands off your degree. Anyone can earn credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level.

To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page

Transferring credit to the school of your choice

Not sure what college you want to attend yet? has thousands of articles about every imaginable degree, area of study and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you.