Stereotyping – us and they?


A teaching design that empowers the individual through cooperative learning and prevents labeling and stereotyping of groups of individuals through an understanding of covert discrimination in digital media and face to face. The lessons will mainly strengthen the pupils' ability to express themselves orally.The end product of the lessons will be a poster produced by each group to be shared among the rest of the class.


After fulfilling the course, the participants

  • Are methodologically empowered to use collaborative learning as a possible lesson design for enhancing respect for others and respect for self (in action and words)
  • Have augmented their awareness of language use and the risk of open and covert discrimination, through labeling, stereotyping and ignorance
  • Are able to detect actions resulting from discrimination
  • Have developed a conceptual understanding of discrimination and critical literacy

Introduction: Group discussion

  • Do you know what a stereotype means?
  • Can you explain the proverb: “Don’t judge a book by its cover”?
  • Do you label or stereotype people based on their looks and behaviour?
  • Sum up in class

Learning activities:

Activity1a. Hand out four pictures to each group. The participants divide the four pictures between them, one for each. Tell the students to give the person on the picture: a name, a job, a country and two characteristics individually. They have three minutes to do so.

Activity 1b. Work in groups and use the A3 paper divided into four equally big areas, and write with the four markers with four different colours, one colour each. The time keeper presents his character with a name, a job, a country and two characteristics. Then explain to the others why you chose these characteristics. I chose this because….. The writer writes down what the time keeper says on the A3 paper and sticks the picture next to the writing. Then this is repeated four times until all the participants have animated their character.

Activity 1c. Share your poster with the other groups on the wall or on the floor. Inspect all the characters and put a sticker next to the persons you have met in real life. Tell the students to notice any similarities between the descriptions.

Activity 1d. Answer the questions in groups:

On what basis did we animate the characters?

  • Race
  • Gender
  • Ethnic origin
  • Nationality
  • Heritage
  • Religion
  • Sexual orientation
  • Social class
  • Language

Where have we got these ideas from?

  • Personal experience
  • Mass media
  • Ideologies

How does this relate to how we meet individuals?

  • In school
  • In education
  • Personally, face to face
  • Digitally

Work on the same piece of paper. Make three sections and everybody should write their ideas using their own marker under each question.

Take pictures of your poster and upload it in the learning platform (as a documentation of your work). These can also be copied to put up in other rooms in the school.

Reflecting avtivities

  • Ask on what basis they animated their characters? (Class discussion)
  • All students are asked to stand on the floor. They should visualize a red line and they should place themselves on either side of the line (one positive and one negative) according to whether the activities have made them change their understanding of the concept of covert discrimination. After having found their position, they should be asked to express their feeling and argue their position.