Academic Diversity Activities: Walk Apart - Walk Together

This activity is appropriate for a wide variety of ages, ranging from elementary school to adult. Since it requires no special materials, it can be conducted in almost any setting. It is a particularly good activity for groups that are just forming.

Goal

To help participants recognize the differences among people, as well as the many similarities people share.

Time

10–15 minutes

Materials

Open space large enough for two people to take a short walk

Procedure

Two “volunteers” come forward and stand with backs together. Ask the “audience” to call out things about these two volunteers that are different. Differences sometimes pull us apart. As each difference is called, the volunteers take one step apart. When they reach the end of the available space, have them turn and face each other. Now, ask the audience to call out similarities of the volunteers. As each similarity is called out, the volunteers take one step toward each other.

Discussion

  1. Think about the things that were noted as differences. How many were things that we can easily see (gender, size, hair color, skin color, dress, wearing glasses or not, etc.)?
  2. What were some of the similarities? While certain physical characteristics are similar, many other similarities are not so visible. Perhaps both “volunteers” are enthusiastic or both have similar interests or goals in life.
  3. Talk about the importance of the differences and of the similarities among members of the group. Be sure to talk about the importance of accepting and welcoming all members into the group.

Walk Apart - Walk Together (PDF)

Credit:

Adapted from the Scouting Web pages:  http://www.epilogsys.com/ScoutingWeb/ SubPages/DiversAct.htm. Permission to reprint was granted by Kathie Little, Volunteer Girl Scouts of the Old 96 Council.

Penn State School of Agricultural Sciences