Reactions to labels


Standard A: The students will acquire skills to investigate the world of work in relation with the self-knowledge and skills of making decisions about the career

Standard B: The students will implement strategies to successfully accomplish and satisfy their professional goals

Standard C: The students will understand the relationship between personal characteristics, education, professional training and the world of work

Goal:  The students will think of several ways in which society labels people and how conflict resolution techniques can be used when they think they are labeled.


  1. To allow students to face the situation where the company applies labels to certain people.
  2. To help students with the decision to manage labels, such as labels placed by groups of close people.

Materials:  Sheets of paper, adhesive tape and a marker.

Introduction: Apply labels on the backs of certain students. People in the room will react to these people in accordance with the labels they have on the back. People wearing labels will not know what they are and they should pay close attention to how they treat other people in the room. While doing this, think about other labels that society applies to people. For example, there are probably labels that your friends apply to people in school.

Activities: Write one of the following labels on separate sheets of paper and stick them on the back of a few students. Ask students who do not wear labels to walk around and react to the other students as if they were what they write on the labels.

- A cinema star

- A person with HIV

- A patient with a mental illness

- A deaf person

- An offender

- A drug addict

- A famous sportsman


1. Ask the students who had labels to talk about how they felt wearing them. Ask everyone to indicate what label they think would be theirs.
2. Ask students who have not labels, to talk about how they felt treating people in accordance with their labels.
Ask them if they think these things happen in our society. What labels do people apply to others? Ask the students to reflect on the extent to which these labels can harm those to whom they have been applied by the society. Ask them what they can do to manage labeling. Ask them to refer to some of the skills they have learned in conflict resolution activities. Write their answers on the blackboard.

Conclusion: Ask the students to think about how the knowledge gained through this activity can make us more aware of the labeling that takes place in our society and how to manage the situations in which someone is labeled.

Necessary time: 30 minutes

Evaluation/Working task: Ask the students to list the situations they face daily with labeling (for example, television, music, newspapers, family, friends).