Classroom Activities: “Secret Identity” (Justice)On August 11, 2019 by Raul Dinwiddie
>>MEGAN: Hi. My name is Megan. I teach 6th through 12th grade in Georgia. Today we did a lesson on stereotypes. We talked about labeling students and how we label each other. We judge each other based on our labels and think that they’re not changing. So, like, I might judge someone as who they were last year or who they were five years ago and forget that people change and people grow up and people mature, and our labels shouldn’t stay the same. We started off the lesson with just kind of a greeting. It’s great when we can get the kids up and moving, and so we circled up and just did a little good morning to each other throwing the ball around. I’m going to say good morning, whoever’s name and throw them the ball.>>MEGAN: Good morning, Maddie!>>MADDIE: Good morning, Jonah!>>JONAH: Good morning, Ethan!>>MEGAN: Then we came back into the game where they were on two different teams, and they had to come up with what we called “alter-egos” for themselves. So they had– they thought about like what stereotype or genre or category that they would fall in based on their outward appearance. So first step is I’m gonna give you all a note card, and you are gonna write what you maybe would consider as an alter-ego. So we all have things– maybe like stereotypes that we’ve kinda been labeled or put in a certain category– so someone would look at us and maybe our outward appearance looks like an athlete or looks like a… So if people thought they were a jock or athlete or someone who was in the band or played music or things like that and then considered what was really, in them– to them, what they really represented, and they picked something whether it was a maybe a– maybe they weren’t an athlete or they didn’t outwardly appear to be an athlete, but that’s something that they really love to do or someone who does theater or a movie star or they also could pick famous people. I want you to write something that represents who you are, but maybe not everyone would see it on the outside. So they wrote those down, and then the other team– an announcer read one at a time– and the other team had to choose who they thought that represented.>>STUDENT 1: Hip hop dancer.>>MEGAN: Hip hop dancer. So whose alter-ego do you think is a hip hop dancer?>>STUDENT 2: We’ve decided that we think it’s Patricia.>>MEGAN: Patricia, are you the hip hop dancer?>>PATRICIA: No.>>MEGAN: We are incorrect.>>STUDENT 3: We think it’s Devin.>>MEGAN: Devin, is that you?>>DEVIN: Yeah.>>MEGAN: Alright, Devin. Come on over.>>MEGAN: It was really cool to be able to discuss with them how we do– we stereotype each other, and we think we know what the other people in our class like or what– who they are, but we really– we don’t know as much as we think we do. So we can– we can really label people or put stereotypes on people when they’re not– they’re not accurate.>>MEGAN: Alright so were any of you surprised by one of your classmates’ alter-egos that they chose?>>STUDENT 4: I was surprised about Corley’s hip hop dancing. I didn’t know you liked hip hop.>>MEGAN: Some of the kids have gone to school together for a long time, so they base their judgments on them– that person years ago. It’s good for us to do activities like this ’cause it really we think we– even when we know people, we think we know ’em better than we do or we classify them or we label them and sometimes they’re– they’re not accurate. Have you– raise your hand if you…>>MEGAN: It was a really cool way to kind of bust that mindset up with the kids in the class but then also just realizing how that’s like that all the time with people not in the class, too. So it was a great lesson on stereotypes and really talking about getting to know a person and more than just what their outward appearance looks like.