A Class Divided

Submitted By Nicoleboux
Words: 1278
Pages: 6

Opinion Paper of "A Class Divided"
Nicole Boux
Holly Vezina
Assiniboine Community College (Pine Falls)
February 12, 2015

A class divided is an excellent documentary that was filmed in 1970. A third grade teacher named Jane Elliot, preformed an exercise to teach the children about discrimination. Just a few days after the assassination of Martin Luther King, she had divided her all white class into two groups, brown eye and blue eyes. On the first day the blue eye children were more superior. They got extra time at recess, a second helping at lunch time, use of the water fountain. Whereas the brown eye students had to wear collars, they were not allowed to play on the playground, were not allowed to play with the blue eye kids, and they had to use a paper cup to drink water from. The next day the tables were turned. The brown eye kids were more superior then the blue eye children. The brown eyes got extra time at recess and a second helping at lunch. The blue eye children had to now where the collar. Jane Elliot had used this exercise with the children to teach them about discrimination that are among our lives we live. 14 years later, that third grade class had a reunion to go over some of the things they felt during that exercise. In my opinion, the concept of social psychology in my personal and professional life are racism, prejudice, and stereotyping. I agree with this exercise. I feel that there should be more teachers like Jane Elliot, who would want to teach their students about discrimination. Maybe in an old class setting as this exercise made a deep impact on children so young. Teachers around the world should make this a regular lesson in their teaching curriculum. Then there wouldn't be so much racism in the world that there is today. I feel watching this film is very beneficial for health care workers. It helps you to think and feel about your own actions when dealing or caring for a person of another race or culture. I think it will help you to look past the person and look more into their thoughts and feelings. For example I worked with a doctor, who was very particular, wanted everything done now and not later. It didn't matter that I was doing another task. He wasn't happy till the task was complete. He was very stern and to the point about his tasks that he needed done. I thought he was thinking I was incompetent or I wasn't doing my job proper until I started to get to know him better. I actually realize it is probably his Egyptian culture or his background and this is normal for him. Sometimes a person is racist or prejudice without even knowing it. Racism is prejudice and discrimination directed at a particular racial group. Racism may also be defined as the hatred of one person by another, and a belief that another person is less human than another person because of skin color, language, or culture. It is a learned behavior. Racism is a very common thing in today's society. We encounter it in our everyday lives. In the documentary, the teacher asked the children who they do not treat as brothers because you should treat everyone like your brother. The children stated, "The black people and the Indians.”(Frontline 1985) When she asked, “What do you say when you see someone of a different color skin?” the children said, "Look at that" or "dumb people"(Frontline 1985). The teacher then asked, “What do you call black people?” One child said, “Niggers"(Frontline 1985). This being said from children in grade three shows they must have heard these terms before to say it. With living here in Manitoba, I hear a lot of racist remarks or comments about the Aboriginals that live here. It is unfair and biased. Prejudice is an unfair, intolerant or unfavorable attitude towards a group of people. It is a prejudgment that are not based on actual real life interactions with a person or group. It is a form of stereotyping. Different kinds of prejudice tend to lead up to forms of