While the students profiled in this video had a catalyst prompting them to hold a community anti-hate rally, this is not necessary to engage students or the larger community in conversations and learning about diversity and respect. In fact, establishing these principals as priorities in your school -- to be discussed and affirmed not only in times of crisis -- can be very powerful in preventing incidents from occurring or if they do, to know there are established channels of support and response.
This lesson is part of the Not In Our School Video Action Kit, a comprehensive toolkit featuring films, lessons, and resources designed to motivate students to speak out against bullying, and create new ways to make their schools safe for everyone.
Age-level: middle and high school students
Ideas for Implementation:
1. Consider using the video as a prompting guide with either your classroom or an appropriate student group.
2. After viewing the video, engage in a discussion about its applicability to your school and community:
a. One student in the video spoke about the need for “active participation” to ensure their town was not a place for hate. What does the idea of “active participation” mean to you? Does it apply to everyone in a community? Why or why not?
b. We also heard in the video that “The enemy is not the Nazis, but any form of hate.” How do you think that these students could continue to promote anti-hate efforts in their school and community beyond the crisis they faced with the neo-Nazi group? Are these activities that we could apply to our own school or community?
3. Some ideas for engagement may include:
· Plan a student assembly inviting students to speak of their own experiences with bias and prejudice to be followed by small group dialogues around action items that can be developed and implemented by students, teachers, and administrators to ensure the school is a respectful inclusive community for all.
· Join with a local human relations coalition or civil rights organization to plan a community event to discuss civil rights or social justice issues facing the community. Other school groups could be invited to join.
· Plan a poetry or music “slam” where students share creative expressions around the value of diversity, mutual respect and acceptance. In addition to the live performances, submissions could also appear in the school or local paper, a dedicated Facebook page, You Tube post, etc.