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JOURNAL – “A Class Divided”


For this journal, you will watch the famous sociological film, “A Class Divided”. The film is 55 minutes long. It is a documentary about an Iowa schoolteacher who, the day after Martin Luther King Jr. was murdered, gave her third grade students a first-hand lesson on the power of groups and organizations. Her experiment left the children deeply impacted for the rest of their lives.

INSTRUCTIONS: Watch the entire film. Answer the following questions using the terms and concepts mentioned in Chapter 6 of our book, when appropriate. Please cite page numbers when referring to information or direct quotes from the text, e.g., (Macionis, p. 162). Use specifics from the film and the chapter wherever possible. Follow directions carefully, answer questions thoughtfully and completely.

RUBRIC: To get the full points you must answer each question carefully and completely, using quotes, examples, and/or definitions in the text and from the film to support your answers, where appropriate. I NEED TO SEE THAT YOU ARE READING THE BOOK AND THAT YOU UNDERSTAND THE CONCEPTS AND CAN APPLY THE CONCEPTS TO THESE QUESTIONS. If you do that, you will get the full points. I am not looking for quantity, I am looking for quality; there is no minimum or maximum length for each question.

ACCESSIBILITY: There is closed-captioning available for this film. Choose cc.

Step 1: Watch the following 55-minute film. Be sure to start with Chapter 1, “The Daring Lesson”.

Step 2: Answer the following questions using the film and the book, where appropriate. Each question worth 5 points.

(1) How did you see in-groups and out-groups in the film “A Class Divided”. You must cite specifics from the film and chapter.

(2) How do you see the concept of groupthink in this film? You must cite specifics from the film and chapter.

(3) Review the concept of the Thomas Theorem from Chapter 4, In the film, how did the negative and positive labels placed on a group become self-fulfilling prophecies? You must cite specifics from the film and chapter..

(4) It’s easy to understand why third-graders might not refuse to obey their teacher, but when the exercise is done with prison guards later in the film, why don’t any of the adults object? You must cite specifics from the film and chapter.

(5) Jane Elliot’s experiment was first done in her classroom in 1968, but how and why is her experiment still relevant in the year 2021? Connect this classic experiment to current events.

Here is the link to movie: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1mcCLm_LwpE&ab_channel=FRONTLINEPBS%7COfficial

Here is the book: https://pdf.zlibcdn.com/dtoken/77b49f9a0485f8de3cffd5c2b0ab8242/Society_the_basics_by_John_J._Macionis)_3674248_(z-lib.org).pdf

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