"Challenge Ideas, Not People"

Managing classroom conversations to navigate mandates of free speech and freedom from discrimination

By Usable Knowledge, on March 1, 2017 7:11 PM

Developmental psychologist Richard Weissbourd, the co-director of Making Caring Common and a senior lecturer at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, offers advice on setting the kind of classroom norms that can create a respectful environment for rich conversations about even the most challenging topics.

"It's very important that we elicit multiple views and honor free speech, but also protect human rights," Weissbourd says. "It's important that we tell kids to appreciate the complexity of others people, as they appreciate their own complexity.

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Faculty in this article

Richard Weissbourd

Richard Weissbourd's work focuses both on how schools and parents can inspire and teach children to be moral people and on how schools and communities can better support children facing risks connected to poverty.