Respect

Respect is a really Big Idea. The definition seems straightforward, yet it carries nuanced interpretations and corresponding actions depending on geography, culture, community, and generation. We make significant decisions based on our understanding or respect and perceptions of disrespect. Respect often sits at the heart of the issues we see in relationships, families, classrooms, schools, communities, and the world. The media brings us daily reminders of the danger of not understanding each other’s definition of respect and disrespect.

When we do not directly address the meaning and actions of respect we operate with a hidden and potentially incorrect set of assumptions. As we enter into short and long term relationships the assumptions and misconceptions about respect will be problematic and in some cases result in tragedy.

A deep discussion on respect is critical for understanding each other and improving relationships.

Big Idea: Respect/Disrespect

Essential Question: How do we develop a deep dialogue about respect to building stronger relationships and communities

Challenge: Define and demonstrate respect in your relationships, family, classroom, school, and community.

Sample Guiding questions:

  • How do I define respect?
  • How do we define respect?
  • How do societies and cultures define respect?
  • Does someone deserve respect because of their position, title or uniform?
  • What happens when someone believes they should be respected and they are not respected?
  • How does respect impact relationships?
  • What does it mean to show respect?
  • Who should be respected?
  • Why should they be respected?
  • etc.

Sample Guiding Activities:

  • Develop a personal definition of respect
  • Interview friends, families and communities to understand their definitions of respect
  • Interview teachers, police, coaches, etc to understand their definition of respect
  • Identify issues in the news where there are conflicts in the definition of respect.
  • Explore the idea of respect in history and literature
  • Identify the qualities of respect – what does it look like?
  • Identify the qualities of disrespect – what does it look like?
  • etc.

Synthesize – what did we learn?

Solution Development – Put our learning into positive action

Solution Implementation, Evaluation, and Iteration

Evaluation – What did we learn, how can we change things?

Example Reflection Prompts

  • My personal definition of respect is . . .
  • How is my home definition of respect different than my home definition?
  • What does respect look like?
  • Who do you respect and why?
  • Describe a time when you felt respected . . .
  • Describe how it made you feel . . .
  • Describe a time when you felt disrespected . . .
  • Describe how it made you feel . . .

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Category: Big Ideas