School is back in session and last night was the first meeting of the only classroom course I have left, Advanced Practice. I was ambivalent going in (I didn’t even know who the instructor was) but left with more enthusiasm than I expected to muster at this point in the program. The instructor seems like a sharp cat; he is a career Army social worker, an engaging speaker, funny, self-deprecating, and he demonstrates a desire to promote active learning on our part.
Last night he broke us into groups for a “values clarification” exercise. Usually, I hate these types of things but this one was pretty good. If you are curious and/or want to try it, is below the fold.
The exercise involves listening to or reading the following story; after the story, there will be directions underneath.
Once there was a girl named Julie who fell in love with a boy named Neal. Julie and Neal lived on opposite sides of a wide river. This was never a problem until a storm wiped out the only bridge connecting their shores.
Julie quickly became lonely for Neal and went to Joe, a ferry captain who she knew would bring her across. Joe said that he would take Julie across if she would sleep with him. Appalled, Julie shouted “Never!” and left Joe’s house, slamming the door.
Julie went to Ivan and told him of her dilemma, but Ivan said that he had neither the time nor the desire to get involved and offered no help.
Weeks passed, and Julie became miserable from missing Neal. Finally, she went back to Joe and offered to sleep with him in exchange for passage. Joe agreed and they carried out the terms of their agreement.
When Julie was finally able to see Neal, she eventually told him about what she had done to obtain passage across the river. Neal was horrified, and immediately broke up with Julie.
A devastated Julie went to her only friend on Neal’s side of the river, Moe, to whom she told everything that had happened. Moe went to Neal’s home and beat him senseless. Julie watched the whole thing and laughed hysterically the entire time.
Yeah, I know it’s a weird little story. Now, order the characters from 1 to 5, with #1 being the least objectionable (or most sympathetic) and #5 being the most objectionable or least sympathetic. Leave some comments as to how you arrived at your conclusion.
There is no right or wrong order. The point of the exercise is not to critique anyone’s values; rather, it helps participants to learn about their own values and how they prioritize them.
If there are any participants, I will post my conclusions during the discussion. Have fun.