LESSON 1 - ON BEING NASTY TO PEOPLE AND BEING NICE TO PEOPLE
Objective: To understand the concept of Positive Tolerance.
Starter: One of the mysteries of life is why people are nasty to each other, when there is absolutely no reason to be so. Nastiness can take many forms, of course, but we will firstly think about violence on its biggest scale – war. Since Ancient Times, great thinkers throughout the world have thought long and hard about this question:
Now list all the times when you think that war can be right – teacher summarises discussion via board etc.
Main part of lesson
1. “Now is the time to move from relations between countries to relations between individual people – now list all the occasions when you think that violence can be right.” Teacher summarises discussion with a list via board etc. No order of priority.
2. Teacher then reminds the class that violence can take many forms – it is not just obvious and physical. It can be hidden – for example, out of school bullying; mental cruelty; institutional racism. Some philosophers argue that, in a way, anything that prevents people from reaching their potential is a form of violence – secretly disrupting the learning of a class, for example.
Class then list all the examples of non-physical violence they can think of. Teacher summarises list via board etc. No order of priority.
3. Teacher then reads:
THEN HAVE A QUICK CLASS BRAINSTORM – 10 RECENT EXAMPLES.
Students now list 10 examples of sarcasm or cruel humour that they have heard recently in school. Teacher summarises discussion in a careful, sensitive way – ensuring that the discussion is issue-based rather than personal.
4. The teacher then moves the lesson to the consideration of this key question –
QUICK BRAINSTORM. No order of priority.
5. Students now consolidate their learning by going back to points 1, 2 and 4 above and they prioritise those lists for themselves with written work.
Plenary: teacher leads discussion on to how a happy and peaceful school is a tolerant school. A school that accepts and VALUES differences rather than a school where students poke fun at people who are different.
This is not an easy thing for many students and we accept that many will not be able to change overnight – but we will reassure them that we will help them make our schools places of POSITIVE TOLERANCE. That is, schools where we VALUE DIFFERENCE and EMBRACE DIVERSITY. Schools where students become involved in the creation of a more tolerant world through ACTIVE CITIZENSHIP.
Students define the concept of Positive Tolerance with writing.
iRespect is an education resource for the development of positive tolerance - find out more...