Do NOT put People in Boxes

Welcome to our new monthly topic –

Energizer: Pass the Imaginary Question Ball

1. If you are the first person to pass the ball, hold your hands as if you are holding a ball. You can decide how big it is! 

2. Share 1 thing (quality, trait, characteristic, things you like or hate) that you think is unique to you, and 1 thing (quality, trait, characteristic, things you like or hate) that you think is similar to others.

3. Say the name of the person you are going to pass the ball. Wait until the person says “Ready,” then pretend to throw a ball to that person.

4. If you are the person to catch the ball,

  • pretend that you are catching it. Try to keep the size of the imaginary ball.
  • Do you have things in common with the peers who shared before you? Which ones?
  • Share 1 thing that you think is unique or special about you, and 1 thing that you think is similar to others. Try to share different things than your peers before you (see step 2).

Let’s do 3-4 rounds! Were you surprised by how many different and similar qualities we have?

Don’t Put People in Boxes

Have you heard the phrase, “Don’t judge a book by its cover”? What do you think it means? Share with peers

What about phrase “Don’t put people in boxes“? What do you think it may mean? Share what you think and then we will watch the video.

Now, that we have watched this social experiment, what do you think it means when we say that we put people in boxes?

Putting different people in “boxes” means that we decide right away how a person is going to act and think by just simply looking at them. Yet, people are different! The way they look and sometimes act does not necessary reflect who they are, how they think, or what they have gone through in their lives! Humans are quick to judge, that’s why these views of “boxes” are made.

Is it fair to “judge a book by its cover” or put people in “boxes”? Why do you think we do that?

Yet, our snap decision is often subconsciously based on such “boxes” that are referred to as unconscious biases. Let’s explore what an unconscious bias means.

An Introduction to Unconscious Bias

How can we overcome unconscious biases if they happen within milliseconds? First of all, it is important to recognize that we have them! Think about the situation at a store, school, or community event. Who do you want to be friends with? Who do you try to avoid? Why do you think this happens.

Once you start seeing the pattern, try to break it and be more inclusive: maybe make friends with people who are different than you are. Do not try to pass a judgment before you get to know the person. And remember to apologize if you offended somebody by getting something wrong about the person based on your biases.

Let’s explore some more ideas and work through scenarios on being more inclusive!

What Does It Mean to Be Inclusive?

Before we say goodbyes for today, do you have examples of inclusion, unconscious bias, putting people in “boxes”, or “judging book by the cover” that you have experienced or you have seen somebody else experiencing? What needs to be done to make our community a more inclusive place?