I found the post of Penne Yniguez to be particularly refreshing. Her post discussed the eradication of stereotypical behavior through the education of young children, and the importance of parental involvement in helping children form good core values. I strongly agree with her statement. I believe that children who are exposed to diversity at a young age grow up to be more open-minded and accepting individuals.
However, I believe that the awareness of diversity is only the first step. Children must also be taught to appreciate the differences they may have with their peers. They must be taught that each difference provides an opportunity to learn something new – a chance to see things from a different prospective with which they are free to agree or disagree. Making children aware of various personalities is insufficient.
They must also be taught to understand and peacefully resolve any disputes that may arise from differences in background, experience and opinion. Children should be taught that despite their efforts, others may still disagree or respond with aggressive or discriminatory behavior. As my colleague Penne stated in her post, it is equally important that parents take an active role in the education of their children as so as to ensure sold value formation.
It is essential that children be taught to resolve disputes that arise from differences by striving for clarity and understanding and to be open to compromise. This will not only foster a more peaceful school environment, but those children will eventually grow up into future heads of families, companies and even countries. If we can teach our children to be more accepting of differences, we will eventually build a society founded on appreciation instead of discrimination.
I was also touched by the post of Maria Barber. Despite Maria’s unconventional upbringing, she seems to have managed to have acquired strong values and maintained a positive outlook on life. I found it particularly interesting that she mentioned that respect for others and fairness were common values she learned despite the fact that she lived in a ‘Blind Pig,’ a place I would not normally expect to be an appropriate place for a child, let alone a child who was being taught to be honest and love God above all others.
Maria’s statement is a testament to a fact that good values and respect for others can be taught and learned despite the surroundings of the child. While I still believe that the environment of a person affects their attitude towards different kinds of people, Maria’s post shows that a person can be taught values which may compliment or counteract the environment of the person. I disagreed with the post of the person who was surprised by the questions of the Human Relations Attitude Inventory.
The purpose of the Inventory is to assess the attitude of the person with regard to different kinds of people. One way to accomplish this is to assess whether or not the person is prejudiced. I did not feel that the questions fed into prejudices, nor did I feel that they were geared to sexism, racism and homophobia, as the person mentioned. Rather, I felt the questions were geared toward the determination of the existence of prejudice with regard to those issues.
Although I felt the questions were useful and achieved their purpose, I would suggest that some of the questions be modified so as to help expose any hidden prejudices the test takers might have. This is because most of the reactions posted mentioned that they were not surprised by their answers to the questions. I feel that Attitude Inventory would be more useful and accurate if it were more focused on the exposure of unconscious attitudes and mindsets.