For this post, I decided to do a reflection comparing my service learning to Finn's explanation of Anyon's study. This study focused on differences in the classrooms based on socioeconomic status. The results were labeled: executive elite, affluent professional, middle class, and working class. For my service learning, I am volunteering in a school that would fit into the working class category. Despite the results Anyon produced, my classroom does not follow her description. This may be due to the teacher I am working with or the school environment, but I am hopeful that this may be a sign that these types of unjust situations are becoming better.
"In the working class schools, the dominant theme was resistance" (Finn 12). This line did not describe my students or classroom in my opinion. "Knowledge in the affluent professional school was viewed as being open to discovery" (Finn 16). Though this describes the affluent professional school, I felt that this described my classroom environment much better. Also, Finn says "Control involved constant negotiation" (17). This also described the affluent professional school, but I found it very apparent in my "working class" school. The teacher is very concerned with negotiations and getting the students input on situations. She allows them to dialogue about problems they are having to find solutions or give consequences to students that deserve them.
I thought that this article, especially the Anyon study, related to Kozol's "Amazing Grace." Both spoke of the unbreakable cycle of poverty and social class and the struggle to change social classes since society is determined to continue the status quo. Finn said that these segregated schools teach students how to survive in their social class, not how to change it. The idea of continuing the family business or trade was described as keeping people in their rightful class. This is obviously unjust, but it is happening and making it so much harder for people to release themselves from their labeled social class.
Talking point: Does anyone else notice differences in their volunteering experiences or do your classrooms go along with the descriptions given in Finn's arcticle?