Exploring Organizational Core Values and How We Account for Other Experiences or Visions


Diversity and DifferenceKnowledge and UncertaintyPoverty and NeedWork and Vocation


Service & VolunteerismService & Civic OrganizationsEducationTeachers' Inquiry Project


Home FuneralNikki-Rosa


Adams, Shelby Lee, Giovanni, Nikki

Big Questions

What assumptions do we make about others?What do we know for sure? What do we not know?How do we know what someone needs?How should we respond to people and communities in need?What is the value of work for me? For my community?

Opening Activity

Opening Activity #1:

Take about 3 minutes and look at your core values handout. Try to prioritize this list for yourself.  Two questions to consider 1) if you had to choose, which one is the most important? 2) If you had to lose one of them, which one would drop out? And why? Pair up with someone and discuss these 2 questions for about 5 minutes. Make sure you both share.

Opening Activity #2:

Think back to your childhood and think of a person or an event that had a big influence on you, that shaped who you are in some significant way. Who or what was the person/event? How did the person or the event influence you? What stands out to you about it now?

Discussion Questions

  1. After looking at the image: Take a minute on your own and jot down some impressions. What do you notice? Who or what strikes you? What's a question that comes to mind?
  2. If you had to break the image down into positive things/less positive things (or things you're uncertain about), how would you catalog this image?
  3. What do you feel like you can know/understand about this image? What can't you know/understand?
  4. After reading the poem: Very concretely, what kinds of things does the speaker remember enjoying about her childhood?
  5. Why does she say her childhood is a drag? What's a drag about it?
  6. Why does the speaker think that if she becomes famous, people won't talk about how happy she was as a child?
  7. What are some of the other differences between what the speaker remembers and what she perceives that others might want to point out about her history?
  8. Who is/are "they" in the poem? What do they not understand?
  9. When the speaker says: "and somehow when you talk about home/it never gets across how much you/understood their feelings" -- Whose feelings are we talking about here? Who is the one understanding? And what does she understand?
  10. What does the speaker want? Does she want a story told about her?
  11. Can you sympathize with "they"? Why do they keep talking about her hard childhood?
  12. Looking back at the image: Is there a "they" in the image we looked at? What about us looking at it?
  13. Going back to the core values hand-out: How do you see these core values at work in the reading (or not)? In the image? Are some present? Some missing? Some in conflict?
  14. What would the speaker say is missing?
  15. Thinking about your work, how do you ensure that are taking into account other's perspectives/experiences? What does that look like -- to value/validate?
  16. How do we get others to invest in our perspective if they have different experiences or visions?

Closing Activity

Thinking about your own service and work in the coming year... What is one question to ask yourself -- or one thing to remind yourself of -- as you enter a situation that you think needs to be changed?

Back to Discussion Plans