What can racism feel and look like?


Learning Area:Cross-KLAs[contentblock id=iconinfo]
Age Group:Primary Upper (10-12) – Secondary Middle (15-16)


Students will be able to identify what racism can look and feel like.


This exercise in racism education is based on the “Blue Eye/ Brown Eye” exercise, which was first designed and used by Jane Elliott in response to the death of Martin Luther King Jnr in 1968. This exercise is intended to run concurrently with a standard lesson focused on a particular outcome appropriate to your circumstance.

Worksheets to download

[su_list icon=”icon: download” icon_color=”#555″]


[box id=”suggestedactivities”]

Suggested activities

1. Allocation of stickers and seating to students

Students are to line up outside the room. The teacher gives each student a sticker and instructs them to stick it onto their shirt collar so that it visible. Distribute more of one colour that the other
(only two colours). The students with the minority colour are instructed to sit in a particular area whilst other students are permitted to sit where they choose.

2. Favourable/Unfavourable treatment

Continue with the delivery of a lesson that fits into your scope and sequence. Give favourable treatment to individuals with the majority colour and unfavourable treatment to those with the minority colour sticker. See teacher notes for some suggestions.

3. Class discussion

Ask each student with a minority sticker to identify 2 ways they were treated unfairly. Students are to stick their post-it notes on the board.

  1. Ask each of the students with a majority sticker to nominate one thing that was fair and one thing that was not. They are to write it on a post-it note and stick it on a different part of the board.
  2. Ask students to write on a post it note three feelings they felt when they experienced or witnessed the unfair treatment. Students place the post it note on the board.
  3. Discuss the results with the class and highlight the overt and covert racism that occurs and the feelings that this causes. As a class, construct a list of the effects of racism.
  4. Students are to create a poster at home that highlights the effects of racism. The posters can be displayed throughout the school.



[one_fourth_last id=”relatedsidebar”]

Related resource

Relevant websites

[su_list icon=”icon: external-link” icon_color=”#555″]



This has been adapted from Jane Elliott’s “Blue Eye/Brown Eye” exercise 1968Ogden Newspapers Inc

Date: 09 September 20018