Lifelong Learning Programme

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Title of Product
A class divided
Name of Author(s)
Jamens University
Name of Producer
Date of Production
Language of the review
Language of the product
Type of product
Thematic Area
Integration of immigrants students
Target Group
Description of Contents
According to the Foundation for Advanced Social Research ( This documentary is a psychosocial experiment dealing intolerance. In 1968 a primary school teacher, Jane Elliot decided to carry out an exercise with her students and teaching students following the death of Martin Luther King. It was an experiment based on social categorization and aimed to educate the students of the effects of discrimination, who practices both as the sufferer.
Was to divide the class into two groups based on eye color. Thus, the children who had blue eyes the teacher would say that they are superior and more intelligent than brown eyes and therefore had the right to go to recess or they might repeat the food. Meanwhile, the brown -eyed children would say that they are slower, less intelligent and more awkward, so that they could enjoy the privileges of the first . Furthermore, every girl and boy with brown eyes class were asked to wear a neckerchief that served to identify them quickly as the discriminated group. This separation in the classroom quickly gained consequences and fighting began between the two groups and class discussions. Lifelong friends were now confronted simply by the fact that they had been told they were different.
The next day, the teacher roles reversed. The funny thing is that at that time the group performed the tasks and classroom exercises significantly faster than they had the previous day and much faster than the blue-eyed group. Each group had adopted fully the role of dominant and subordinate with corresponding moods of joy and sorrow in each of them. Upon completion of this exercise, the teacher explained that it was an exercise for them to realize how racist act in his country and that if did not seem right to feel discriminated by the color of their eyes , it is not just perpetuate prejudice based social categories such as skin color .

Later, Elliot developed a similar experiment with officials from a maximum security prison in New York and received results surprisingly very similar to those of children.
This material, though very old , still has an impressive educational potential for creating a positive social climate in the school through personal experience, reflection and expansion joint debriefing for his involvement in the daily activities of the people who displayed and even more who do the activity in their class group . That is, is an exemplary tool to develop in a school , but also useful to be displayed and , from there , establish a debate on key progressive process of social exclusion .
To do this, the video is very explanatory , both with a voiceover explaining that the goal is to get at all times as to the sequence of images and dialogues that are highly selected for the viewer to go staying impressed with the progressive change children who come to exclude their friends for the sake of having different colored eyes .
It is very good also , sequencing of the activity performed by the teacher with students that meets most experiential learning pedagogical recommendations :

1 º . - Contextualizing the experience to facilitate their understanding among students.
2nd . - To explain clearly the criteria used for group settings and thinking you want to convey , in this case a physical characteristic such as eye color .
3 º . - Act consistently with the above , even to the bewilderment of the students and the feeling of discomfort among some of them.
4th . - Allow time for students to interact.
5 º . -Using the opposite approach thus awakening revenge certain behaviors among students , facilitating the understanding of their own and others ' feelings .
6th . - After the activity , explain situations of everyday life where people behave equally unfair.

It has great potential transfer , it is available in English and is translated at least into Spanish. It is very graphic and the mere observation of the scenes you can learn the importance of treating everyone equally, without discriminating against anyone . Besides the documentary is easy to find on the net .

As for the positives , include the following :
• It is a complete and very experiential materials , which provides support for better learning .
• Your content is very truthful. It is a recording of a real experience , which maximizes the chance of being credible.
• It is useful to develop resources and strategies from the social sphere.
In terms of areas for improvement , it would be advisable to incorporate practical materials and resources for the support of these children in the classroom and to repeat the experience to see if the results are replicated .

The material is intended to minimize the occurrence of social exclusion and discrimination . It is therefore well suited to contribute to the objectives of the School Project Safety Net, and that racial discrimination represents one of the identified causes of school absenteeism. Any intervention aimed at the promotion and improvement of teaching practices will , therefore, indirectly, a prevention of this problem.

Later, Elliot developed a similar experiment with officials from a maximum security prison in New York and received results surprisingly very similar to those of children.

20 December 2014

Final Partners’ meeting

The fourth partners’ meeting took place in Florence (IT) on 15 December 2014. The meeting had the objective to check the activities carried out since the third meeting of the project and share and assess the in progress results. A special focus has been dedicated to the presentation of the strategies to solve the case scenarios.