This post was written by Sidra A. in response to the Day 9 challenge action: to engage in a respectful dialogue with someone who holds different political views than you do.
This challenge required students to engage in conversation with people of differing political views, or any views in general. Our English class went down to the lower library to complete this action by participating in the "conversation stations" activity. These stations included questions and discussion prompts that were designed to help us talk about important issues without immediately focusing on the politics surrounding them. For example, one of the questions asked: "What are the most important factors in maintaining a well functioning society? What does it mean for a society to function well?" Others inquired about our feelings on art, technology, and the environment. Though each topic is one currently being debated in the political arena, the questions asked us to really consider what we think about these topics before we attach them to politics. It helped to prompt thoughtfulness and discussion.
We attended each conversation station with different people and were able to hear their views and present ours as well. It was a safe and friendly environment where students felt comfortable to speak their minds. We may all be different, look different, think different, but we all bleed red. In essence, we all are the same, equal. We must respect our differences and overcome them in order to gain friendship rather than allow them to become obstacles in our lives. Having conversation is the most engaging way to learn about someone, to find similarities and understand differences, and to determine how to work together. Talking is caring.