Thursday, March 12, 2009

Life lessons in third grade

Last night in my sociology class we watched the documentary "A Class Divided." Its about a third grade teacher who wanted to teach her class a good lesson on discrimination. She told her students that the blue eyed kids were smarter, nicer, and just overall better people. They were rewarded with seconds at lunch and a longer recess. The brown eyed kids were not to play with the blue eyed kids, they were constantly degraded and were told they were stupid and just overall not as good as the blue eyed kids.

These kids were ruthless. Within an hour into this excersise the blue eyed kids were convinced they were better. Within an hour being called "brown eyed" was a derogatory term.

The next day, it was switched. The brown eyed kids were told they were really the special ones, and the teacher claimed she had lied about the blue eyed kids. It was appaling to see how quickly the brown eyed kids accepted the fact that they were better and had no problem seeking revenge.

I think I took something else away from the video. Of course the main issue, a lesson in discrimination was portrayed very well, the part that got me thinking was what was really going on in their heads. They were given a test before, during, and after this experiment. Before the test scores were average. Then during, the kids who were the "special kids" of the day scored extremely high, and the "unimportant kids" scored really low. Then the after the class average was higher than it was before the experiement.

The kids did better in school when feeling a sort of power, or accomplishment. Which made me think how that applies to my own life. You are more likely to be motivated when you accomplish things and accomplish things successfully. Too many times in School I have given up in a class because I did terrible on a test. With the lack of confidence turns into lack of motivation, which turns into failure.

It was kind of an eye opener for me, that when you dont excel, try again until you do!


  1. Wow, that is interesting. Good post!

  2. Very well said, Jordyn. In fact too many of us base our self worth on what people tell us instead of what we know we can do.

    Keep it up!